Western Asiatic Gold Mask of a Divinity or a Hero
Culture: Western Asiatic
Period: 8th – 7th century B.C.
Material: Gold sheet
Dimensions: Width: 10.5cm
American art market (New-York), acquired in 2001.
Conditions: Excellent state of preservation, with superb uniform. surface.
This magnificent mask is composed of a single gold sheet, cold hammered over a core of wood or an anvil. Originally, it certainly belonged to a composite statuette, that is to say, one made from several materials: this technique was in widespread use in Near Eastern art and was already part of its artistic conventions during the Neolithic Period.
The eyes, the joined eyebrows and the nostrils were carved to hold inlays of ivory, lapis lazuli, bitumen, semi-precious stones, etc. The small holes on the sides suggest that this mask was originally affixed to a support, now lost.
"The 1st Anniversary Exhibition" Miho Museum, Japan, 1998, pp. 18-21, n. 5.