Thursday, March 26, 2009

Behind the Masks

Be afraid, be very afraid. But if you look carefully, two of them are quite cheerful.

Korean masks. Aren't they a little bit scary? Hahoe mask is a very precious cultural inheritance which has been solely appointed as a national treasure of Korea (No. 121, including two of Byungsan masks) and is a world-wide masterpiece in the mask art division.

Where from: Korea.

When: 2009.

Who: Adif Ismail.

Wow Factor: #247, 248, 249 & 250

This mask is called Yangban. (See the one with blue background above). Yangban is used in the Hahoe dance, a traditional play in Hahoe Village in Gyeongsangbuk Province. Designated National Treasure 121 in 1964, Hahoe masks are preserved in the National Museum in Seoul. The articulated chin moves down creating a big, open laughing mouth. The Yangban is one of the most popular masks and is displayed in the homes of many Koreans.
The other three masks are also used during Hahoe dance. There are 14 altogether.
The wood materials used in making the Hahoe masks are all alders, and the manufacturing period is estimated as the middle of Koryo Dynasty.

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