Female Nō mask

Female Nō mask

Click here to view image

Focus:
Author/ School/ Dating:

Japan, Edo period, 17th - 18th century

Technique and Dimensions:

Polychrome carved wood

Location:

Gallery II, display case 12 (inv. no. M-738)

Provenance:

Edoardo Chiossone collection, testamentary bequest, 1898

Object Type:

Theatrical mask

 

Nō (nōmen) masks are classified into five main characters, each comprising numerous varieties: this belongs to the main character Onna (woman) of the Shakumi variety, a middle-aged woman. Characterized by the white complexion, the shaved eyebrows drawn on the upper part of the forehead and especially the blackened teeth, a cosmetic practice typical of married women. Nō masks representing female roles were used by male actors, since acting was forbidden to women.