Accents for Today
the makishi
ironwood masks
beaded wire figures
key rings, magnets, ornaments
bowls & boxes
weya crafts
iron shavings animals
push toys
shona stone pendant necklaces
barber shop signs
musical instruments
children & young adults
other crafts & special orders

These strange masks look very contemporary but go back a long time and are very popular in the Matabeleland province which includes Victoria Falls, Hwange (home of the famous game park), and Bulawayo (Zimbabwe’s second largest city). They are carved by Isindebele (northern Ndebele) men who have a distinct history and language from the southern Ndebele. The type of ironwood used is Rhodesian Teak also known as Zambian Redwood (Baikiaea plurijuga). It is extremely dense, difficult to carve but can be polished to a beautiful lustrous, rich deep red-brown. This wood is precious and harvesting is strictly controlled by the Zimbabwe Forestry Commission. Interestingly, the tree can re-grow from a stump.

The masks belong in pairs, man and woman.

sizes: 24” - 30”

small: 5½”