When trying to determine which antique African mask to purchase, there is a lot you should consider and research before making the purchase. Many masks may seem like good deals, but they may have cracks or issues that you aren't able to see in person with just one look. There are many important questions you need to ask yourself when looking for African Masks such as:
What type of mask am I looking for?
Where is this mask coming from?
Who is selling this piece and what kind of reputation do they have?
Why is this piece so expensive? Is it really worth it?
How old is this mask, and what culture does it come from?
Is it an authentic piece or a reproduction that has been altered?
Type of African Mask You Are Looking For:
Many first time buyers often don't consider how much they should be paying for their mask. The first very important question to ask yourself before looking at pieces is "what type of mask are you looking for?" There are many different types of masks to choose from, so if you know exactly what kind you want, research reputable dealers who specialize in the type of mask you are interested in. If not, conduct more research on your options before deciding which pieces would be best suited for your needs.
Where Is This Mask Coming From?
The country of origin is very important when it comes to an Antique African mask. The artisans in Africa have always had their own individual style that set them apart from one another. When determining which piece you are interested in, know where the mask is coming from before making your decision. There are many different African countries that produce beautiful masks, so do some research on each of these cultures before making a purchase!
Who Is Selling This Piece and What Is Their Reputation?
One of the most important factors to consider when buying an antique African mask is who is selling it. An agent or dealer can often times be a great option when buying a piece, but it's always good to do some research on them before making your purchase. The reputation of a dealer should be clean in order for you to feel comfortable with whom you are purchasing from.
Why Is This Mask So Expensive?
Antique African masks come in all shapes and sizes, and each piece will range in price depending on what type of mask it is, how old it is, where the artist comes from and the intricacy in production. When trying to figure out why a mask is so expensive, it's important that you consider all of these factors. Many pieces are made with rare materials, which can make them more valuable because there aren't many around!
Is It an Authentic Piece or A Reproduction?
One of the most important questions to ask yourself when deciding on purchasing an antique African mask is whether or not its authentic. Sometimes this may seem obvious if one piece looks fake while another looks very real, but keep in mind the age and condition of the mask itself. One good way to know if a piece is authentic is by understanding how old it might be and where it came from. If you don't have any knowledge about this kind of thing, you should ask a dealer or an expert before making your decision!
Once you have made a decision on which mask to purchase, there are many things to take into consideration. Whether it be from a reputable dealer who has been in the industry for decades, or from a family member who decided they no longer want it taking up their space, you need to consider all these factors before buying any piece. Don't get caught up in the moment and impulsively make a purchase without doing your research first. Trust us when we say that feeling knowledgeable about African masks is key while trying to find your perfect one! The steps you should take when purchasing an antique African mask may seem overwhelming at first, but once you do some research and ask yourself important questions it can help make the process much easier!
As always, thanks for reading!