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Spirits Speak: A Celebration of African Masks [Hardcover]

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Item Number 221754  
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Item description for Spirits Speak: A Celebration of African Masks by Peter Stepan...

Spirits Speak presents a selection of the most important African masks found in major museums and renowned private collections around the globe: an overview such as has never been compiled in this way before. Artistic mastery, charisma, age and authenticity were paramount selection criteria with only the very best examples representing each well-known mask type. An introductory essay elucidates the conceptual intricacies and varying functions of the masks and sweeps away deep-rooted misunderstandings. Enlightening commentaries offer background information about the function and origins of each mask's use within the ethnic groups from which they originate, and a foldout map places them in their original geographical context.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   192
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1" Width: 10" Height: 13"
Weight:   3.95 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Oct 31, 2005
Publisher   Prestel Publishing
ISBN  3791332287  
ISBN13  9783791332284  

Availability  0 units.

More About Peter Stepan

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! PETER STEPAN is an art historian and curator whose many books include Icons of Photography: The 20th Century and Photos That Changed the World (both by Prestel).

Peter Stepan was born in 1956.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Arts & Photography > Art > Art History > Regional > African
2Books > Subjects > Arts & Photography > Art > Sculpture > General

Reviews - What do customers think about Spirits Speak: A Celebration of African Masks?

Beautiflly produced book of recycled pictures  Nov 21, 2007
The book is an excellent introduction the beauty of African masks for the beginning enthusiast, presenting excellent photographs of arguably some of the most beautiful examples of masks of the various tribes of Africa. For the more advanced enthusiast the book is a let-down - most of the images are recycled from other publications. There is a scarcity of new material and new examples. I can therefore recommend this book only for those who want to get a first visual impression of the wonderful arts of Africa, without getting into much ethnography or cultural background.
Breathtaking  Jan 9, 2007
This book is breathtakingly beautiful, AND contains massive amounts of well-organized scholarship on African Masks. Stepan begins with a beautifully written section that, besides tackling the misunderstandings the early collectors had of these masks, reconnects the masks with the communities who created them and the ceremonies in which they were (and still are) intimately connected. The plates that follow are exquisite and fill three-quarters of the book. But, in addition to all that, each mask which is presented on a full-color, full-page plate (the pages in this book are HUGE) is then explained in the Catalogue entries (by Iris Hahner). There is also a poster map of Africa showing the masks' places of origin. I am a professor of Humanities and borrowed this book from the library a few times . . . but then HAD to have one of my own.
A Celebration of African Masks  Mar 10, 2006
A wonderful book filled with great photographs and well wirtten text. Photographs illistrated, to allow the viewer to see every detail of each mask. A very informative book, almost like a museum tour, with the exception that the viewer will never see as many examples of African Masks in one place at one time. 100% Satisfaction
A representative sampling of African masks from the world's leading museums and private collections  Jan 2, 2006
The gorgeous Spirits Speak: A Celebration Of African Masks edited by Peter Stepan with contributions by Iris Hahner gathers a representative sampling of African masks from the world's leading museums and private collections, choosing samples which reflect powerful artistry and spiritual meaning alike. The power in Spirits Speak lies in full-page color photos of each mask making for a catalog which pairs an introductory section of history and cultural insight with plates which pack a visual punch.

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