This glorious mask was made by the Huichol people,
…a southern tribe descendant from the Aztecs. Still residing in the coastal Jalisco and Nayarit of Mexico, the Huichol people continue many of their cultural practices. For the Huichol, the art world and the spirit world were one. Each of the beautifully created pieces held a highly spiritual significance to the artist.
The mask featured above has been covered in many tiny seed beads. Unlike most beadwork from the tribes in the United states, these beads are all standing with their holes facing up! This is done by first covering the sculpture, in this instance a mask, in resin and beeswax. Because of the low melting point of beeswax, it can easily be softened by the heat of the crafter’s fingers. Small bits at a time, the beads are set into the softened wax. As the wax cools, it hardens around the beads, keeping them in place.
To learn more about the Huichol people and their art, visit their website!