Masker's tunic

Grassfields kingdoms
mid-20th century
Artist Unidentified

Object Place: Cameroon


Overall: 110 x 88 cm (43 5/16 x 34 5/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Fiber, human hair

Not On View


Africa and Oceania, Contemporary Art, Textiles and Fashion Arts



This tunic-shaped gown adorned with tufts of human hair is a common mask garment in the northwestern Grassfields. It most likely belonged to a male “leader mask” in one of the masquerades owned by extended families, but removed from its context it is difficult to assign it to a specific mask persona or chiefdom.


1970s, sold by Reginald Groux and Yasmina Chenoufi of the Galerie Noir d'Ivoire, Paris, to Geneviève McMillan (b. 1922 - d. 2008), Cambridge, MA; 2008, to the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation, Cambridge; 2009, gift of the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation to the MFA. (Accession Date: June 17, 2009)

Credit Line

Gift of Geneviève McMillan in memory of Reba Stewart