About this artwork
his carefully crafted Waka onna mask was carved out of cypress wood by Yamaguchi Bidou, one of the few craftsmen in Japan today producing masks in keeping with the high standards of the traditional art form. Defining characteristics of the young female mask include the large forehead; downcast, elongated eyes; small mouth with a lower lip that sticks out; blackened teeth; and white complexion.
The facial expression can be very hard to read—it is kept neutral so that the performer’s gestures can project the proper emotions. This type of young female mask is meant to depict a woman who is about 25–30 years old. It has been fashioned to appear somewhat aged and worn.
- Yamaguchi Bidou
- Waka Onna (Young Woman) Noh mask
- Japanese cypress, colors, lacquer
- 21 × 13 × 7 cm (8 1/4 × 5 1/8 × 2 3/4 in.)
- Gift of Yamaguchi Bidou