VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Noh mask of an aristocratic lady
RJP 4024
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

This female mask, of the 'Zo onna' type, named after the legendary mask carver Zo(ami), is a wonderful example of the ideal of beauty cultivated in courtly society during the late Heian period (897-1185). The reserved grace of white-painted, aristocratic faces is perfected in these masks, which reflect the ideal of an oval, flat face with finely curved, red lips and blackened teeth. The eyebrows have been shaven and artificially painted higher up on the forehead. The quality of the masks is of great importance for the successful performance of a Noh play.

History of the Object
Only mask carvers who understand the complexity of the Noh drama are capable of lending Noh masks their unmistakably enigmatic expression.

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Type
Sculpture 
Materials
Cypress woods 
Measurements
Width 13.5 cm. Height 21.1 cm.  
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unknown 
Where it was made
Japan 
Geography
Japan 
Time period
AD 18th century ~ AD 18th century 
Creation date
18th Century; mid 18th Century, Edo Period 
Function
Headdress 
Acquisition
Collection Prof. Dr. Ernst Grosse, Freiburg; Collection Balthasar Reinhart, Winterthur 
Copyright
Museum Rietberg 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
Museum Rietberg 
Museum
Museum Rietberg 
Credit line
Museum Rietberg, Gift Balthasar and Nanni Reinhart 

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