Mask depicting an ill person. Kodiak Eskimos. USA , Alaska state, Kodiak. North America, The North-West of the continent, Alaska, Kodiak Island. 1843.

Mask depicting an ill person
Collection MAE RAS: № 571-4
Image ID: 4071693
Museum inventory number:
№ 571-4
Mask depicting an ill person
Kodiak Eskimos
USA , Alaska state, Kodiak
North America, The North-West of the continent, Alaska, Kodiak Island
Voznesenskii Ilya Gavrilovich, zoologist, entomologist, traveller
I.G. Voznesenskii's expedition (1840-1849)
wood, paint, plant fiber
height 34.3 cm, width 17 cm, width of the profile 14 cm
This mask is from the second act of the ritual. “The second dance. They begin to sing evenly in a long-drawn out manner. They beat the drum quietly and infrequently. The stage area is empty. Whistlers with rattles, in a state of undress and with their heads adorned like those in the previous act, who have been sitting still for several minutes on rocking chairs in the four corners of the barabora up near the roof, suddenly swoop down to the ground, shaking their rattles in time with the voices and drums and then, staying in one place, twirl around, rising and falling as if bowing to one another and then moving back quickly to their former positions. Now four people are dancing (at first walking and then running until they tire out). They are dressed just like the previous group. During this dance the women are singing in fairly decent voices in a quiet and drawn-out style. Finally they form a circle and slowly and deliberately, little by little, speeding up into a run, they begin to push one another, trying to hit one another in the legs and thus win in order to get a loud roar of approval. This dance, beginning with the appearance of the dancers, lasted a half-hour or more.” (Liapunova1967: 30)
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