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DECK THE HOLIDAY'S: 2017

Thursday, October 19, 2017

TOP HALLOWEEN PARADES IN THE UNITED STATES!!







  The Autumn season brings with it the cool air, pumpkins, the color changing in the leaves and most of all the fun! Who can resist a fun fall festival or parade. Below are some fall parades that will be going on in the U.S. Have fun.










The Village Halloween Parade In Manhattan, New York

    With 53 Bands of Different Types of Music, Dancers and Artists, The Village Halloween Parade in Manhattan is said to be the most outrageous and most colorful Halloween parties in the United States. This parade has everything you would think a Halloween parade would have. Everything from huge paper-mâché puppets, jugglers, stilt walkers and break dancers and one of the hugest crowd of onlookers possible leading up in the millions. The parade takes place on October 31st at 7pm in Greenwich Village, along 6th Ave from Spring Street to 22nd Street.











New Orleans Halloween Parade ~ Krewe of Boo


    The Krewe of Boo in New Orleans is a Voodoo themed Halloween Parade that happens in the French Quarter. Come see a cast of scary creatures along with the Voodoo Queen herself, Marie Laveau that will highlight the New Orleans' Krewe of Boo. The parade pays homage to the history and culture of New Orleans Unlike carnival parades, this one is a fund raiser for the city's first emergency responders, especially those who served in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. The parade is on October 30th, at 6pm, starting at Elysian Fields and Decatur and down to Canal Street and Convention Center Boulevard.












Toms River Halloween Parade

    Toms River New Jersey is having their 73rd Toms River Halloween Parade. Sponsored by the Toms River Fire Dept. Toms River claims this to be the 2nd largest Halloween parade in the US with everything from simple masks to full blown fire-breathing floats.
   With some 6,000 participants and 100,000 spectators, it is sure to be a wild evening. The parade takes place on October 30th at 7pm.










The Anaheim Fall Festival and Parade

    The Anaheim Ca. Halloween parade takes place in Downtown Anaheim on October 30th. They are in their 74th year and they don't plan to slow down. This festival will have everything from a pancake breakfast, games, to costume contests and of course the Halloween parade. The fun starts at 11am and goes until 5pm. The parade will be at noon and will start at Harbor Blvd.












Salem Mass. Haunted Happenings


    How complete would Halloween be to visit Salem Massachusetts. Salem is full of haunting history, and every year starting in October through to Halloween night there are several events, festivals and parades that go on in this city. Some of the haunting events that are fun for kids and adults are:
    Fright Nights at the Witches Cottage, Tricks, Treats and Treasures, Spirit ways: A Night in Besieged Salem Village, Spirits of the Gables, Legacy of the Hanging Judge, Halloween Extravaganza at Vic's Boathouse, Ghost & Legends Trolley Tour and so much more.

HALLOWEEN AROUND THE WORLD, PART III!!






Australia

    In Australia they celebrate Guy Fawkes Eve as the day for Halloween or as it is also known Mischief Night or Danger Night.
   On this night it is a day for children to create mischief by doing tricks or getting a treat.
It is not widely done in Australia as it is in America and elsewhere, in fact most children in Australia celebrate it as dance at their schools or in other activities. Not as a day to create lawless or other mischief.











Estonia 

   In Estonia folktales tell of unsuspecting people who wander into village churches on All Saints' Day night only to find all the pews filled with ghosts who sit and kneel attentively while a ghostly priest celebrates mass at the altar.












France

    In France people celebrate All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day but not Halloween.
   French bellmen would walk through the streets warning of the arrival of, "The spirits are about to arrive!" Once everyone heard this they would all hurry to bed and shut their eyes.
   Today the French children beg for flowers with which to decorate churches and the graves of loved ones.











Guatemala

    In Guatemala, the advent season is a time of men dressing up as the devil in costumes playfully chasing children through the streets.
   To bring the season to a close on December 7, people are to light bonfires in front of their homes. They would toss accumulated garbage and other debris onto these. In the City fireworks explode into the night.
   This event is called the Burning the Devil or La Quema del Diablo.










Holland

    Saint Martin's Day, November 11th, is a celebration in Holland very much like "trick-or-treat". People in Holland go around getting treats by ringing on some doorbells, singing songs for which they are given sweets or tangerines. They go around with lanterns and here is one the songs they sing:
Elf November is de dag,
Dat mijn lichtje,
Dat mijn lichtje.
Elf November is de dag,
Dat mijn lichtje branden mag.

Words to Sint Maarten Song.

   This is the story of why the Dutch celebrate Saint Martin. It was a dark and stormy night. Martin was quite alone on that dark stormy night. He only had a cloak and a singular piece of bread. He was returning home when suddenly a poor and homeless man appeared in the darkness. Martin felt pity for the man and gave him half his piece of bread, and half his cloak and offered him hospitality in his home. Now he is called St Martin and is known for his kindness to the stranger. That is why they celebrate Saint Martin's Day.










New Zealand

   In New Zealand they celebrate Guy Fawkes Day as the day for Halloween. It is popularly a night for mischief and is called Mischief Night or Danger Night, which is on November 5th.










Nigeria

    The Odo Festival is held to mark the return of the dead (odo) to those still living, this occurs in the village of Igbo Nigeria.
   The festival has three stages. The first stage is observed with ritual celebrations and festivities to welcome those returning from the spirit world. The spirits stay for six or more months. Their departure is an emotional affair as they will not return for two years.
   There are Odo plays featuring different characters in costumes. Most roles are by men with women as chorus members and as spectators.











Sicily

    Children in Sicily go to bed on November 1 well aware that outside, in all the graveyards, the dead are rising from their tombs and coming like Santa Claus to deliver candies, cookies, and gifts to leave for them in celebration of All Saints' Day.
   On All Souls' Day the Sicilian chefs mark the holiday with almond-flavored "bones of the dead", bone-shaped biscotti, with molded-sugar dolls, and with fave dei Morti, little Venetian cookies in the shapes of fava beans, a legume associated since ancient times with rites of the dead.











Vietnam

   Vu-Lan or Wandering Souls' Day is a festival celebrated by all Vietnamese. When a person dies it is believed their soul goes to hell where it is judged and, depending on the person's behavior on earth, is sent to heaven or kept in hell. Souls in hell can gain release by the prayers of the living. Wandering Souls' Day is the best time for these rituals. Hell's gates are opened at sunset and the naked hungry souls fly out, returning to the family altars.
   Tables are spread with a meal for the ancestors and 'wandering souls', and incense sticks and votive papers are burned. This takes place in large rooms or outdoors so there is plenty of room for the 'wandering souls' who have no relatives, or whose relatives have forgotten them.











Wales

   In Wales people build Halloween fires on the Vigil of Samhain. The celebration is very somber. Each of the family is to write his or her name on a white stone which is then thrown in the fire. Then all of the family members march around a fire, praying for good fortune. The next morning, after the fir has died out, each member sifts through the ashes to search for the stone. If any stone is missing, it means that the spirits will call upon the soul of that person during the coming year.

TOP TEN MAD SCIENTISTS!!


    • Johann Konrad Dippel (1673-1734)Germany


     
  • A fact that few know is that this alchemist and theologian of the seventeenth century, the inventor of one of the first synthetic dyes, he worked in the Castle Frankenstein, near Darmstadt, Germany, not clear whether the writer Mary Shelley was inspired by this character to create her famous novel. The truth is that Dippel spent much of his life in search of an elixir of immortality, and ironically died in the attempt to drink a potion of his invention.



    Jack Parsons (1914-1952)United States



     
  • Rocket propulsion researcher at one of the founders of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory of NASA was also a believer in the occult and black magic practitioner. Part of the success of the space program of the United States is the work of this remarkable self-taught scientist. Friend of the 'wizard', English Alestes Crowley and L. Ron Hubbard, founder of Dianetics. Parson's tragic death in a home lab cemented his legend.



    Oliver Heaviside (1850-1925)England



     
  • It is known as one of the founders of modern theory of electrical circuits and vector analysis in electromagnetism, and his ideas are evident to this day. He almost won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1912. He replaced the furniture in his house with stones of granite, was obsessed with chickens running over his bike, documenting what he ate, so he left detailed accounts in his diaries, he could make bowls and glasses of milk for days, suffering termofilia, fear of not being well covered for the cold. But the most bizarre was that he kept his sister Marry Way as his maid for 7 or 8 years, in a state of virtual slavery.




    Blondlot Rene (1849-1930)France



     
  • Although a respected scientist in his day, especially for his work with electromagnetism, is remembered for having 'discovered' the N-rays, "a new form of radiation that could never be proven and suspected it was a hallucination of his.




    Nikola Tesla (1856-1943) Hungarian-US




     
  • Perhaps one of the most important inventors in history for his contribution in the development of the electricity industry (to him we owe the first practical use of the AC). The list of inventions (such as AC power generator, the induction motor, etc.). And ideas generated in life contrasts diametrically with his eccentricities. He never had a permanent home, as he preferred to live in hotel rooms where his demands were quite peculiar: he had a strange case of trifilia, a marked obsession that made him as daily for towels, pates or silverware in multiples of three. He left his hotel 3 times daily to go around the block and counted his steps, and always chose hotel room 207. He also washed his hands all the time, and had a terrible phobia of germs, and also developed an irrational fear of round objects. In addition, he experienced visual and auditory hallucinations. He came to regard pigeons as his only friends.




    Wilhelm Reich (1897-1957) Germany




     
  • A disciple of Freud and one of the reformers of psychoanalysis, his figure and work are still controversial. Although the creator of many theories in the field of psychology, he is remembered, perhaps unfairly, for creating the concept of orgone, a kind of vital energy that could be stored in a device he invented. This led him to prison by order of the Food and Drug Administration of the United States, who considered him mentally unstable. And ordered the burning of many of his books on the subject. He died in prison. Out of this incident, many of his ideas have influenced other creative minds.




    Theodore Kaczynski (born 1942)United States




     
  • With an IQ of 170, this brilliant mathematician specializing in geometric function, a graduate of Harvard. Considered a young genius, he had rather peculiar habits. He suffered a pathological shyness and hated human contact. At a level of living in isolation in a cabin in the word of Montana. He began a campaign of terrorism by the nickname of "Unabomber. He had the authorities on his trail for nearly twenty years.




    Jacques Beveniste (1935-2004)France




     
  • His brilliant career in biology broke down when he published an article establishing the existence of certain elements in the water was suggested that it was biologically "active. His experiments claimed that water was the "memory of substances that had been dissolved in it. He was declared a fraud by the scientific community.




    Bruce Edwards Ivins (1946-2008)United States




     
  • This American microbiologist worked at the Research Institute of Infectious Diseases. In a 2001 bioterrorist attack with anthrax spores, he was one of the main suspects. Ivins committed suicide a few days before the FBI could file charges against him, so his apparent involvement in the events will remain a mystery.



    Trofim Lysenko (1898-1976)Ukraine




     
  • Under the regime of Stalin, this character led the agricultural science in the former Soviet Union. He claims the concept of Lysenkoism, a campaign against the genetic theory that was maintained for thirty years, arguing that this was contrary to the Marxist concepts and calling it a "bourgeois science". this model is currently interpreted as submission of science to the political interests of the state.

DIY HALLOWEEN PAPER CENTERPIECE!

  Another one of my finds while looking for some Halloween Ideas and inspiration.  I even made some of these and my wife, took it  to work and put them on her desk.  I really like these, the are also a good idea at Christmas time.  Brought to you by www.littleluna.com .  These are really simple and are a nice gift for someone special.

Misc. Monday - Halloween Paper Centerpiece





Hi Friends!

 In case you didn't get to see it over at Eighteen25 last week,
I thought I would post on here my tutorial for the

Halloween Paper Centerpiece

This project was SOOO much fun and would be an awesome craft nite with the girlfriends.

I hope you like it.

SUPPLIES:
- Box/Vase/Cart to use as Centerpiece Base
-Floral Foam (Found at the Dollar Store)
-Spanish Moss (Found at the Dollar Store)
-Skewers
-Paint
-Foam Brush
-Scrapbook Paper
-Hot Glue
-Embellishments

INSTRUCTIONS:


 
 
 
 

1. Begin by picking out your Halloween Paper (BEWARE: there are so many stinkin' cute ones at the Scrapbook stores right now!!), and cut TWO 12 inch strips that are 1 inch - 2.5 inches wide (per accordion flower).







 
 
 

2. Put two strips together and fold back and forth until you are all the way through. Then, hot glue the two ends together as well as the other ends so it makes a circle.
 
 
 


 
 
 

3. Push edges of strips IN to make an accordion flower. Hot glue center and hold, and do the same on back. For another tutorial on these flowers, I used one HERE.





 
 
 

4. Paint skewers the desired color you'd like and let dry. I stuck mine into the floral foam to dry.







 
 
 

5. I wanted to add a little something to the skewers, so I cut out .2 inch white strips of vinyl and twisted them along the skewer. My hubby is super smart and suggested I stick them in his drill, turn it on, and let the drill do the twisting. It takes seconds (isn't he smart?). (I used black electrical tape, something everyone has, for the stripping)





 
 
 
 
6. Add buttons or other embellishments to your flowers.
I used some of these FREE vintage Halloween Prints from Matthew Mead found HERE.



 
 
 
 

7. Hot glue skewers to backs of flowers. Set aside.
8. Add floral foam and moss to your centerpiece base.
I got my Halloween Box at Hobby Lobby for $7.
Not too bad. (when I made mine I used a styrofoam pumpkin)










9. Stick skewers through the moss and foam into your base and arrange as desired

Monday, October 16, 2017

MAKE SOME NIGHTSHADE BLACK AND BLOOD RED CANDY APPLES FOR YOUR NEXT PARTY!

 Here's another nice find while surfing for holiday ideas.  Wouldn't these be great at a teen Halloween party or even as a nice offering at an adult party.  Brought to you by www.mattbites.com .  The black and red play off each other and look so cool together with the actual sticks from a tree.  Good luck and enjoy making these, let me know how they turned out for you.

Adam’s Scary Apples



spooky-apples



   Full confession: When I was about 4 or 5 years old I was so utterly terrified of Halloween that I once ran from the dinner table to the bedroom where I locked myself inside it for 20 minutes while Trick or Treaters came to the front door of the house. I’m not sure why I did that exactly as I wasn’t normally a timid or shy child; I think my dramatic exit had more to do with the fact that I enjoyed that sense of fright, darkness and mystery that rolls around every October. I like to be scared when I know nothing bad will actually happen.
   This explains my interest in fright nights, scary movies, haunted houses, macabre scenarios, you name it. I think there’s a part of all of us that likes that thrill…why else would we visit haunted houses, watch slasher films, and listen to Paris Hilton songs and videos?
   Not that I’ve done the latter. Even that’s too scary for me.
   When I mentioned to Adam that I wanted to do my first Halloween blog post about a cocktail I tried he quickly informed me that it would neither be a) exciting b) deep enough or c) have enough pizazz. “What’s so exciting about a cocktail, all by itself?” he asked. I could see his point as there are tons of others who focus on spirits and do a much better job. Besides, this drink wasn’t anything exciting or thrilling but perfect for the grown-ups at any Halloween party. “Give me a few minutes and I’ll help you out” said Adam.
   Wow. Was my drink really that lackluster that it needed help? Apparently so.
He grabbed his car keys, ran to the store, came back but not before making a detour to the front yard where he began tugging at one of the trees. My partner isn’t a man of a thousand words (which must be why we’re a great match) but sometimes stoic and methodical. He was up to something I could tell but I didn’t quite know what. When he returned to the kitchen he ransacked his baking shelf, took out the candy thermometer, a sheet pan and began his kitchen alchemy.
What happened next was pure magic.
   I walked back into the kitchen to find the most beautiful candied apples before me. Black glossy cinnamon-scented candied glass enveloped small apples, twigs became their handles, and a few shockingly red candied apples only made their black counterparts more ominous. It was halloween on a silpat, a spooky forest that completed my cocktail.






drinks-and-apples




   I had no choice but to have him bundle up the apples, head to the studio with me where I knew exactly how I wanted to photograph them. They joined my new favorite black wine goblets from Juliska in an eery still life that still gives me the chills when I look at it. Only this time there’s no need to lock myself in my bedroom.


Red &  Black Candy Apples

8-10 medium sized apples
8-10 wooden twigs, twimmed
3 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 cup of water
several drops of cinnamon flavored oil
1/4 teaspoon of red food coloring
1/4 teaspoon of black food coloring

   Clean and dry the apples. Try to remove as much of the wax as possible. If you purchase them from your local farmer’s market then chances are they have not been treated with the food grade wax that makes then shine. Remove any stems or leaves and insert a twig into the end of each apple. To facilitate easier twig entry you can carefully sharpen the end of the twig or use a candy stick to create a guide hole. Set apples aside.
Heat and stir sugar, corn syrup and water in a saucepan until sugar has dissolved. Boil until the syrup reaches 300 degrees on a candy thermometer. Don’t go over 310 degrees or your candy burns and then you’ll be sad.
   Remove from heat and stir in flavored oil and food coloring.
   Dip one apple completely in the syrup and swirl it so that it becomes coated with the melted sugar candy. Hold the apple above the saucepan to drain off excess. Place apple, with the stick facing up, onto a baking sheet that’s greased or lined with a silpat. Repeat the process with the remaining apples. If your syrup thickens or cools too much, simply reheat briefly before proceeding. Let the apples cool completely before serving.

A note about the black apples: Lighter colored apples (Granny Smith, Golden Delicious) work well in making the red appear bright and glassy; darker apples like red delicious help the black candy appear as dark as possible. Muy spooky!
Also, Adam made one batch with red food coloring and after he had a few red apples he reheated the candy mixture and added black food coloring. Adding black to red will make it darker. He repeated the dipping process. Black food coloring can be found online or at specialty baking stores.

THE HISTORY OF THE MASK!!






Definition Of What a Mask Is-


A form of disguise. It is an object that is frequently worn over or in front of the face to hide the identity of a person and by its own features to establish another being. This essential characteristic of hiding and revealing personalities or moods is common to all masks. As cultural objects they have been used throughout the world in all periods since the Stone Age and have been as varied in appearance as in their use and symbolism.

General Characteristics
   Masks have been designed in innumerable varieties, from the simplest of crude “false faces” held by a handle to complete head coverings with ingenious movable parts and hidden faces. Mask makers have shown great resourcefulness in selecting and combining available materials. Among the substances utilized are woods, metals, shells, fibers, ivory, clay, horn, stone, feathers, leather, furs, paper, cloth, and corn husks. Surface treatments have ranged from rugged simplicity to intricate carving and from polished woods and mosaics to gaudy adornments.
   Masks generally are worn with a costume, often so complete that it entirely
covers the body of the wearer. Fundamentally the costume completes the new identity represented by the mask, and usually tradition prescribes its appearance and construction to the same extent as the mask itself. Costumes, like the masks, are made of a great variety of materials, all of which have a symbolic connection with the mask's total imagery. Ideally the costume should be seen with the mask while the wearer is in action.
   The morphological elements of the mask are with few exceptions derived from natural forms. Masks with human features are classified as anthropomorphic and those with animal
 
characteristics as theriomorphic. In some instances, the mask form is a replication of natural features or closely follows the lineaments of reality, and in other instances it is an abstraction. Masks usually represent supernatural beings, ancestors, and fanciful or imagined figures and can also be portraits. The localization of a particular spirit in a specific mask must be considered a highly significant reason for its existence.










   The change in identity of the wearer for that of the mask is vital, for if the spirit represented does not reside in the image of the mask, the ritual petitions, supplications, and offerings made to it would be ineffectual and meaningless. The mask, therefore, most often functions as a means of contact with various spirit powers, thereby protecting against the unknown forces of the universe by prevailing upon their potential beneficence in all matters relative to life.


The Making Of Masks


   With few exceptions, masks have been made by professionals who were either expert in this particular craft or were noted sculptors or artisans. In societies in which masks of supernatural beings have played a significant ceremonial role, it is presumed that the spirit power of the created image usually is strongly felt by the artist. A primary belief involved in both the conception and the rendering of these objects was that spirit power dwelled in all organic and inorganic matter, and therefore the mask will contain the spirit power of whatever material was used to make it.
   This power is considered a volatile, active force that is surrounded by various taboos and restrictions for the protection of those handling it. Certain prescribed rituals frequently have to be followed in the process of the mask's creation. A spirit power is also often believed to inhabit the artist's tools so that even these have to be handled in a prescribed manner. As the form of the mask develops it is usually believed to acquire power increasingly in its own right, and again various procedures are prescribed to protect the craftsman and to ensure the potency of the object.









   If all the conventions have been adhered to, the completed mask, when worn or displayed, is regarded as an object suffused with great supernatural or spirit power. In some cultures it is
believed that because of the close association between the mask maker and the spirit of the mask, the artist absorbs some of its magic power. A few West African tribal groups in Mali believe, in fact, that the creators of masks are even potentially capable of using the object's supernatural powers to cause harm to others.
   Aesthetically, the mask maker has usually been restricted in the forms he can use since masks generally have a traditional imagery with formal conventions. If they are not followed, the artist can bring upon himself the severe censure of his social group and the displeasure or even wrath of the spirit power inherent in the mask. This requirement for accuracy, however, does not restrict artistic expressiveness.

   The mask maker can and does give his own creative interpretation to the traditionally prescribed general forms, attributes, and devices. The artist, in fact, is usually sought out as a maker of masks because of his known ability to give a vitally expressive or an aesthetically pleasing presentation of the required image.

The Wearing Of Masks
   The wearer is also considered to be in direct association with the spirit force of the mask and is consequently exposed to like personal danger of being affected by it. For his protection, the wearer, like the mask maker, is required to follow certain sanctioned procedures in his use of the mask. In some respects he plays the role of an actor in cooperation or collaboration with the mask. Without his performing dance and posturing routines, which are often accompanied with certain sounds of music, the mask would remain a representation without a full life-force.










   The real drama and power of its form is the important contribution of the wearer. When he is attired in the mask, there is a loss of his previous identity and the assuming of a new one. Upon donning the mask, the wearer sometimes undergoes a psychic change and as in a trance assumes the spirit character depicted by the mask.
   Usually, however, the wearer skillfully becomes a “partner” of the character he is impersonating, giving to the mask not only an important spark of vitality by the light flashing from his own eyes but also bringing it alive by his movements and poses. But it would seem that the wearer often becomes psychologically completely attached to the character he is helping to create. He loses his own identity and becomes like an automaton, without his own will, which has become subservient to that of the personage of the mask. It appears, however, that at all times there remains some important, even if sub rosa, association between the mask and its wearer.


The Mask Though Someone Elses Eyes

   It is as consecrated objects imbued with supernatural power that masks are viewed by the spectators or participants at ceremonials where their presence is required. Whatever their specific identity may be, the masks usually refer back to early times, when their initial appearance occurred. This basic aspect of the mask is understood at least in essence by everyone. A paramount role of the mask is to give a sense of continuity between the present and the beginnings of time, a sense that is of vital importance for the integration of a culture with no written history.
   Psychologically the spectators become associated with the past through the
spirit power of the mask, and this often leads the participants to a state of complete absorption or near-frenzy. This is not, however, a consistent reaction to masked ceremonials. That depends on the character whose presence the mask represents.
   In some cases, the spirit or supernatural being depicted is viewed with rejoicing and almost a familiarity, which leads to gaiety that has a cathartic aspect. Even so, the mask has a spirit content that is respected and revered, even if it is not showing a being with malignant potential. All of these forms have spirit and magical qualities and are thus esteemed as agents for the accomplishing of superhuman acts.










   Some masks, however, do represent malignant, evil, or potentially harmful spirits. These are often used to keep a required balance of power or a traditional social and political relationship of inherited positions within a culture. The characters depicted are also prescribed by tradition and enact roles to achieve the desired ends.
   The drama involving these masks is often associated with secret societies, especially in Africa, where the greatest range of mask forms and functions can be observed. These forms are often used in very restricted performances, where only select persons can view them. This is also true in other areas where masks are used, such as in Oceania, the Americas, and even in some of the folk mask rites still performed in Europe.

Meaning Of Different Masks


   On the basis of present knowledge, it would appear that there is not or has not been any set response or reaction by any one of the three groups involved with the mask: the artist, the wearer, the spectator. There is, however, a reaction of a very particular kind common to every culture, a response such as awe, delight and pleasure, fear and even terror: these are as traditionally determined as the forms and costumes of the masks themselves. This is a learned and inherent pattern of conduct for each culture.
   Masks, therefore, that have a closely comparable appearance in several unrelated groups in quite different parts of the world often have totally dissimilar meanings and functions. It is thus practically impossible to determine either the meaning or use of a mask by its appearance alone. For example, some masks in Africa, as well as in Oceania and East Asia, have such a grotesque or frightening appearance as to lead one to suspect that they represent evil spirits with an intent to terrorize the spectators; actually they may have the opposite character and function.
   The significance of masks can be determined only by reference to accounts or personal observations of the masks in the setting of their own culture.
   The aesthetic effects of masks, on the other hand, since they derive from the forms and their disposition within the design, can readily be evaluated as art objects. But this evaluation is based on elements very different from those appraised within the mask's own culture. This is partly because the total artistic qualities of a mask derive both from its exterior forms and from its meaning and function within its cultural context.

   There exist, however, in all cultures criteria for determining the quality of objects as art. These criteria differ from one culture to another, and they may be known only from investigations carried out within the varying cultures.










Preserving  And Collecting Masks

   The preservation or disposal of masks is often decreed by tradition. Many masks and often their form and function are passed down through clans, families, special societies, or from individual to individual. They are usually spiritually reactivated or aesthetically restored by repainting and redecorating, without destroying the basic form and symbolism. In many instances, however, the mask is used only for one ceremony or occasion and then is discarded or destroyed, sometimes by burning.
   The collecting of masks has largely been of recent origin. Not until the late 19th and early
 20th century were they seriously appreciated as art objects or studied as cultural artifacts. Most masks have been obtained through archaeological excavations or in field expeditions, that is, in their place of origin.

The Functions And Forms Of Masks


   Masks are as extraordinarily varied in appearance as they are in function or fundamental meaning. Many masks are primarily associated with ceremonies that have religious and social significance or are concerned with funerary customs, fertility rites, or curing sickness. Other masks are used on festive occasions or to portray characters in a dramatic performance and in re-enactments of mythological events. Masks are also used for warfare and as protective devices in certain sports, as well as frequently being employed as architectural ornament.

Social And Religious Uses Of  Masks In Other Cultures


   Masks representing potentially harmful spirits were often used to keep a required balance of power or a traditional relationship of inherited positions within a culture. The forms of these masks invariably were prescribed by tradition, as were their uses. This type of mask was often associated with secret societies, especially in Africa, where the greatest range of types and functions can be found. They were also widely used among Oceanic peoples of the South Pacific and the American Indians and are even used in some of the folk rites still performed in Europe.










   Masks have served an important role as a means of discipline and have been used to admonish women, children, and criminals. Common in China, Africa, Oceania, and North America, admonitory masks usually completely cover the features of the wearer. It is believed among some of the African Negro tribes that the first mask was an admonitory one. A child, repeatedly told not to, persisted in following its mother to fetch water. To frighten and discipline the child, the mother painted a hideous face on the bottom of her water gourd.
   Others say the mask was invented by a secret African society to escape recognition while punishing marauders. In New Britain, members of a secret terroristic society called the Dukduk appear in monstrous five-foot masks to police, to judge, and to execute offenders. Aggressive supernatural spirits of an almost demonic nature are represented by these masks, which are constructed from a variety of materials, usually including tapa, or bark cloth, and the pith of certain reeds. These materials are painted in brilliant colours, with brick red and acid green predominating.
   In many cultures throughout the world, a judge wears a mask to protect him from future recriminations. In this instance, the mask represents a traditionally sanctioned spirit from the past who assumes responsibility for the decision levied on the culprit.

   Rituals, often nocturnal, by members of secret societies wearing ancestor masks are reminders of the ancient sanction of their conduct. In many cultures, these masked ceremonials are intended to prevent miscreant acts and to maintain the circumscribed activities of the tribe. Along the Guinea coast of West Africa, for instance, many highly realistic masks represent ancestors who enjoyed specific cultural roles; the masks symbolize sanction and control when donned by the wearer.











   Among some of the Dan and Ngere tribes of Liberia and Ivory Coast, ancestor masks with generic features act as intermediaries for the transmission of petitions or offerings of respect to the gods. These traditional ancestral emissaries exert by their spirit power a social control for the community.
   Particularly among Oceanic peoples, American Indians, and Negro tribes of Africa, certain times of the year are set aside to honour spirits or ancestors. Among nonliterate peoples who cannot record their own histories, masked rituals act as an important link between past and present, giving a sense of historic continuity that strengthens their social bond. On these occasions, masks usually recognizable as dead chieftains, relatives, friends, or even foes are worn or exhibited. Gifts are made to the spirits incarnated in the masks, while in other instances dancers wearing stylized mourning masks perform the prescribed ceremony.

   In western Melanesia, the ancestral ceremonial mask occurs in a great variety of forms and materials. The Sepik River area in north central New Guinea is the source of an extremely rich
array of these mask forms mostly carved in wood, ranging from small faces to large fantastic forms with a variety of appendages affixed to the wood, including shell, fiber, animal skins, seed, flowers, and feathers. These masks are highly polychromed with earth colours of red and yellow, lime white, and charcoal black. They often represent supernatural spirits as well as ancestors and therefore have both a religious and a social significance.
   Members of secret societies usually conduct the rituals of initiation, when a young man is instructed in his future role as an adult and is acquainted with the rules controlling the social stability of the tribe. Totem and spiritualistic masks are donned by the elders at these ceremonies. Sometimes the masks used are reserved only for initiations. Among the most impressive of the initiation masks are the exquisitely carved human faces of west coast African Negro tribes.











   In western and central Congo (Kinshasa), in Africa, large, colourful helmetlike masks are used as a masquerading device when the youth emerges from the initiation area and is introduced to the villagers as an adult of the tribe. After a lengthy ordeal of teaching and initiation rites, for instance, a youth of the Pende tribe appears in a distinctive colourful mask indicative of his new role as an adult. The mask is later cast aside and replaced by a small ivory duplicate, worn as a charm against misfortune and as a symbol of his manhood.
   Believing everything in nature to possess a spirit, man found authority for himself and his family by identifying with a specific nonhuman spirit. He adopted an object of nature; then he mythologically traced his ancestry back to the chosen object; he preempted the animal as the emblem of himself and his clan. This is the practice of totem, which consolidates family pride and distinguishes social lines. Masks are made to house the totem spirit. The totem ancestor is believed actually to materialize in its mask; thus masks are of the utmost importance in securing protection and bringing comfort to the totem clan.
   The Papuans of New Guinea build mammoth masks called hevehe, attaining 20 feet in height. They are constructed of a palm wood armature covered in bark cloth; geometric designs are stitched on with painted cane strips. These fantastic man–animal masks are given a frightening aspect. When they emerge from the men's secret clubhouse, they serve to protect the members of the clan.
   The so-called “totem” pole of the Alaskan and British Columbian Indian fulfills the same function. The African totem mask is often carved from ebony or other hard woods, designed with graceful lines and showing a highly polished surface. Animal masks, their features elongated and beautifully formalized, are common in western Africa. Dried grass, woven palm fibers, coconuts, and shells, as well as wood are employed in the masks of New Guinea, New Ireland, and New Caledonia. Represented are fanciful birds, fishes, and animals with distorted or exaggerated features.











   The high priest and medicine man, or the shaman, frequently had his own very powerful totem, in whose mask he could exorcise evil spirits, punish enemies, locate game or fish, predict the weather, and, most importantly, cure disease.
   The Northwest Coast Indians of North America in particular devised mechanical masks with movable parts to reveal a second face—generally a human image. Believing that the human spirit could take animal form and vice versa, the makers of these masks fused man and bird or man and animal into one mask. Some of these articulating masks acted out entire legends as their parts moved.

Funerary And Commemorative Uses Of Masks
   In cultures in which burial customs are important, anthropomorphic masks have often been used in ceremonies associated with the dead and departing spirits. Funerary masks were frequently used to cover the face of the deceased. Generally their purpose was to represent the features of the deceased, both to honour them and to establish a relationship through the mask with the spirit world. Sometimes they were used to force the spirit of the newly dead to depart for the spirit world. Masks were also made to protect the deceased by frightening away malevolent spirits.   From the Middle Kingdom (c. 2040–1786 BC) to the 1st century AD, the ancient Egyptians placed stylized masks with generalized features on the faces of their dead. The funerary mask served to guide the spirit of the deceased back to its final resting place in the body. They were commonly made of cloth covered with stucco or plaster, which was then painted. For more important personages, silver and gold were used. Among the most splendid examples of the burial portrait mask is the one created c. 1350 BC for the pharaoh Tutankhamen. In Mycenaean tombs of c. 1400 BC, beaten gold portrait masks were found. Gold masks also were placed on the faces of the dead kings of Cambodia and Siam.
   The mummies of Inca royalty wore golden masks. The mummies of lesser personages often had masks that were made of wood or clay. Some of these ancient Andean masks had movable parts, such as the metallic death mask with movable ears that was found in the Moon Pyramid at Moche, Peru. The ancient Mexicans made burial masks that seem to be generic representations rather than portraits of individuals.










   In ancient Roman burials, a mask resembling the deceased was often place over his face or was worn by an actor hired to accompany the funerary cortege to the burial site. In patrician families these masks or imagines were sometimes preserved as ancestor portraits and were displayed on ceremonial occasions. Such masks were usually modeled over the features of the dead and cast in wax. This technique was revived in the making of effigy masks for the royalty and nobility of Europe from the late Middle Ages through the 18th century.
   Painted and with human hair, these masks were attached to a dummy dressed in state regalia and were used for display, processionals, or commemorative ceremonials. From the 17th century to the 20th, death masks of famous persons became widespread among European peoples. With wax or liquid plaster of paris, a negative cast of the human face could be produced that in turn acted as a mold for the positive image, frequently cast in bronze. In the 19th century, life masks made in the same manner became popular.
   Another type of life mask had been produced in the Fayyum region of Egypt during the 1st and 2nd centuries AD. These were realistic portraits painted in encaustic on wood during a person's lifetime; when the person died, they were attached directly to the facial area on the mummy shroud.
   The skull mask is another form usually associated with funerary rites. The skull masks of the Aztecs, like their wooden masks, were inlaid with mosaics of turquoise and lignite, and the eye sockets were filled with pyrites. Holes were customarily drilled in the back so the mask might be hung or possibly worn. In Melanesia, the skull of the deceased is often modeled over with clay, or resin and wax, and then elaborately painted with designs that had been used ceremonially by the deceased during his own lifetime.

Masks For Use In Therapy


   Masks have played an important part in magico-religious rites to prevent and to cure disease. In some cultures, the masked members of secret societies could drive disease demons from entire villages and tribes. Among the best known of these groups was the False Face Society of the North American Iroquois Indians. These professional healers performed violent pantomimes to exorcise the dreaded Gahadogoka gogosa (demons who plagued the Iroquois). They wore grimacing, twisted masks, often with long wigs of horsehair. Metallic inserts often were used around the eyes to catch the light of the campfire and the moon, emphasizing the grotesqueness of the mask.










   Masks for protection from disease include the measle masks worn by Chinese children and the
 
cholera masks worn during epidemics by the Chinese and Burmese. The disease mask is most developed among the Sinhalese in Sri Lanka (Ceylon), where 19 distinct rakasa, or disease devil masks, have been devised. These masks are of ferocious aspect, fanged, and with startling eyes. Gaudily coloured and sometimes having articulating jaws, they present a dragon-like appearance.
   Masks have long been used in military connections. A war mask will have a malevolent expression or hideously fantastic features to instill fear in the enemy. The ancient Greeks and Romans used battle shields with grotesque masks or attached terrifying masks to their armour, as did the Chinese warrior. Grimacing menpo, or mask helmets, were used by Japanese samurai.
   Many sports require the use of masks. Some of these are merely functional, protective devices such as the masks worn by fencers, baseball catchers, or even skiers. To protect their faces in sports events and tournaments of arms, horsemen of the Roman army attached highly decorative and symbolic masks to their helmets.
   Perhaps the earliest use of masks was in connection with hunting. Disguise masks were seemingly used in the early Stone Age in stalking prey and later to house the slain animal's spirit in the hope of placating it. The traditional animal masks worn by the Altaic and Tungusic shamans in Siberia are strictly close to such prehistoric examples as the image of the so-called sorcerer in the Cave of Les Trois Frères in Ariège, France.










   Since agricultural societies first appeared in prehistory, the mask has been widely used for fertility rituals. The Iroquois, for instance, used corn husk masks at harvest rituals to give thanks for and to achieve future abundance of crops. Perhaps the most renowned of the masked fertility rites held by American Indians are those still performed by the Hopi and Zuni Indians of the Southwest U.S. Together with masked dancers representing clouds, rain spirits, stars, Earth Mother, sky god, and others, the shaman takes part in elaborate ceremonies designed to assure crop fertility.
   Spirits called kachinas, who first brought rain to the Pueblo tribes, are said to have left their masks behind when sent to dwell in the bottom of a desert lake. Their return to help bring the rain is incarnated by the masked dancer. Cylindrical masks, covering the entire head and resting on the shoulders, are of a primal type. They are made of leather and humanized by the addition of hair and a variety of adjuncts. Eyes are represented by incisions or by buckskin balls filled with deer hair and affixed to the mask. The nose is often of rolled buckskin or corncob.
   Frequently the mask has a projecting wooden cylinder for a bill or a gourd stem cut with teeth for a snout. Horns are attached to some masks. Many colours are used in their painting; plumes and beads are attached, and the sex of the mask is distinguished by its shape: round head indicates male and square indicates female. In the western Sudan area of Africa many tribes have masked fertility ceremonials. The segoni-kun masks that are fashioned by the Bambara tribes in Mali are aesthetically among the most interesting.
   Antelopes, characterized by their elegant simplicity, are carved in wood and affixed to woven fiber caps that are hung with raffia and cover the wearer. The antelope is believed to have introduced agriculture, and so when crops are sown, members of Tji-wara society cavort in the fields in pairs to symbolize fertility and abundance.









Festive Uses


   Masks for festive occasions are still commonly used in the 20th century. Ludicrous, grotesque, or superficially horrible, festival masks are usually conducive to good-natured license, release from inhibitions, and ribaldry. These include the Halloween, Mardi Gras, or “masked ball” variety. The disguise is assumed to create a momentary, amusing character, often resulting in humorous confusions, or to achieve anonymity for the prankster or ribald reveler.
   Throughout contemporary Europe and Latin America, masks are associated with folk festivals, especially those generated by seasonal changes or marking the beginning and end of the year. Among the most famous of the folk masks are the masks worn to symbolize the driving away of winter in parts of Austria and Switzerland. In Mexico and Guatemala, annual folk festivals employ masks for storytelling and caricature, such as for the Dance of the Old Men and the Dance of the Moors and the Christians. The Eskimo make masks with comic or satiric features that are worn at festivals of merrymaking, as do the Ibos of Nigeria.


Theatrical Uses Of Masks


   Masks have been used almost universally to represent characters in theatrical performances. Theatrical performances are a visual literature of a transient, momentary kind. It is most impressive because it can be seen as a reality; it expends itself by its very revelation. The mask participates as a more enduring element, since its form is physical.
   The mask as a device for theatre first emerged in Western civilization from the religious practices of ancient Greece. In the worship of Dionysus, god of fecundity and the harvest, the communicants' attempt to impersonate the deity by donning goatskins and by imbibing wine eventually developed into the sophistication of masking. When a literature of worship appeared, a disguise, which consisted of a white linen mask hung over the face (a device supposedly initiated by Thespis, a 6th-century-BC poet who is credited with originating tragedy), enabled the leaders of the ceremony to make the god manifest. Thus symbolically identified, the communicant was inspired to speak in the first person, thereby giving birth to the art of drama.
   In Greece the progress from ritual to ritual-drama was continued in highly formalized theatrical representations. Masks used in these productions became elaborate headpieces made of leather or painted canvas and depicted an extensive variety of personalities, ages, ranks, and occupations. Heavily coiffured and of a size to enlarge the actor's presence, the Greek mask seems to have been designed to throw the voice by means of a built-in megaphone device and, by exaggeration of the features, to make clear at a distance the precise nature of the character.










   Moreover, their use made it possible for the Greek actors—who were limited by convention to three speakers for each tragedy—to impersonate a number of different characters during the play simply by changing masks and costumes. Details from frescoes, mosaics, vase paintings, and fragments of stone sculpture that have survived to the present day provide most of what is known of the appearance of these ancient theatrical masks. The tendency of the early Greek and Roman artists to idealize their subjects throws doubt, however, upon the accuracy of these reproductions. In fact, some authorities maintain that the masks of the ancient theatre were crude affairs with little aesthetic appeal.
   In the Middle Ages, masks were used in the mystery plays of the 12th to the 16th century. In plays dramatizing portions of the Old and New Testaments, grotesques of all sorts, such as devils, demons, dragons, and personifications of the seven deadly sins, were brought to stage life by the use of masks. Constructed of papier-mâché, the masks of the mystery plays were evidently marvels of ingenuity and craftsmanship, being made to articulate and to belch fire and smoke from hidden contrivances. But again, no reliable pictorial record has survived.
   Masks used in connection with present-day carnivals and Mardi Gras and those of folk demons and characters still used by central European peasants, such as the Perchten masks of Alpine Austria, are most likely the inheritors of the tradition of medieval masks.
   The 15th-century Renaissance in Italy witnessed the rise of a theatrical phenomenon that spread rapidly to France, to Germany, and to England, where it maintained its popularity into the 18th century. Comedies improvised from scenarios based upon the domestic dramas of the ancient Roman comic playwrights Plautus (254?–184 BC) and Terence (186/185–159 BC) and upon situations drawn from anonymous ancient Roman mimes flourished under the title of commedia dell'arte.












   Adopting the Roman stock figures and situations to their own usage's, the players of the commedia were usually masked. Sometimes the masking was grotesque and fanciful, but generally a heavy leather mask, full or half face, disguised the commedia player. Excellent pictorial records of both commedia costumes and masks exist; some sketches show the characters of Arlecchino and Colombina wearing black masks covering merely the eyes, from which the later masquerade mask is certainly a development.
   Except for vestiges of the commedia in the form of puppet and marionette shows, the drama of masks all but disappeared in Western theatre during the 18th, 19th, and first half of the 20th centuries. In modern revivals of ancient Greek plays, masks have occasionally been employed, and such highly symbolic plays as Die versunkene Glocke (The Sunken Bell; 1897) by the German Gerhart Hauptmann (1862–1946) and dramatizations of Alice in Wonderland have required masks for the performers of grotesque or animal figures.
   The Irish poet-playwright W.B. Yeats (1865–1939) revived the convention in his Dreaming of the Bones and in other plays patterned upon the Japanese No drama. In 1926 theatre goers in  the United States witnessed a memorable use of masks in The Great God Brown by the American dramatist Eugene O'Neill (1888–1953), wherein actors wore masks of their own faces to indicate changes in the internal and external lives of their characters. Oskar Schlemmer (1888–1943), a German artist associated with the Bauhaus, became interested in the late 1920s and '30s in semantic phenomenology as applied to the design of masks for theatrical productions.










   Modern art movements are often reflected in the design of contemporary theatrical masks. The stylistic concepts of Cubism and Surrealism, for example, are apparent in the masks executed for a 1957 production of La favola del figlio cambiato (The Fable of the Transformed Son) by
 the Italian dramatist Luigi Pirandello (1867–1936). A well-known mid-century play using masks was Les Nègres (1958; The Blacks, 1960) by the French writer Jean Genet. The mask, however, has unquestionably lost its importance as a theatrical convention in the 20th century, and its appearance in modern plays is unusual.
   In many ways akin to Greek drama in origin and theme, the No drama of Japan has remained a significant part of national life since its beginnings in the 14th century. No masks, of which there are about 125 named varieties, are rigidly traditional and are classified into five general types: old persons (male and female), gods, goddesses, devils, and goblins. The material of the No mask is wood with a coating of plaster, which is lacquered and gilded. Colours are traditional.
   White is used to characterize a corrupt ruler; red signifies a righteous man; a black mask is worn by the villain, who epitomizes violence and brutality. No masks are highly stylized and generally characterized. They are exquisitely carved by highly respected artists known as tenka-ichi, “the first under heaven.” Shades of feeling are portrayed with beautifully sublimated realism. When the masks are subtly moved by the player's hand or body motion, their expression appears to change.










   In Tibet, sacred dramas are performed by masked lay actors. A play for exorcising demons called the “Dance of the Red Tiger Devil” is performed at fixed seasons of the year exclusively by the priests or lamas wearing awe-inspiring masks of deities and demons. Masks employed in this mystery play are made of papier-mâché, cloth, and occasionally gilt copper. In the Indian state of Sikkim and in Bhutan, where wood is abundant and the damp climate is destructive to paper, they are carved of durable wood. All masks of the Himalayan peoples are fantastically painted and are usually provided with wigs of yak tail in various colours. Formally they often emphasize the hideous.
   Masks, usually made of papier-mâché, are employed in the religious or admonitory drama of China; but for the greater part the actors in popular or secular drama make up their faces with cosmetics and paint to resemble masks, as do the Kabuki actors in Japan. The makeup mask both identifies the particular character and conveys his personality. The highly didactic sacred drama of China is performed with the actors wearing fanciful and grotesque masks. Akin to this “morality” drama are the congratulatory playlets, pageants, processions, and dances of China. Masks employed in these ceremonies are highly ornamented, with jeweled and elaborately filigreed headgears.
   In the lion and dragon dances of both China and Japan, a stylized mask of the beast is carried on a pole by itinerant players, whose bodies are concealed by a dependent cloth. The mask and cloth are manipulated violently, as if the animal were in pursuit, to the taps of a small drum. The mask's lower jaw is movable and made to emit a loud continuous clacking by means of a string.
   On Java and Bali, wooden masks, tupeng, are used in certain theatrical performances called wayang wong. These dance dramas developed from the shadow puppet plays of the 18th century and are performed not only as amusement but as a safeguard against calamities. The stories are in part derived from ancient Sanskrit literature, especially the Hindu epics, although the Javanese later became Muslims.











   The brightly painted masks are made of wood and leather and are often fitted with horsehair and metallic or gilded paper accoutrements. They are ordinarily held in the teeth by means of a strap of leather or rattan that has been fastened across the inside. Occasionally an actor interrupts the unseen narrator, the Dalang, who is speaking the play. The mask is then held in
 front of the face while the player says his line. The use of theatrical masks in Java is exceptional, since masks, being forbidden under the prohibition of images, are practically unknown in the Islamic world.
   In the 20th century, with the breaking down of primitive and folk cultures, the mask has increasingly become a decorative object, although it has long been used in art as an ornamental device. In Haiti, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, and Mexico, masks are produced largely for tourists. The collecting of old masks has been a part of the current interest in so-called primitive and folk arts. Masks also have exerted a decided influence on modern art movements, especially in the first decades of the 20th century, when painters in France and Germany found a source of inspiration in the tribal masks of Africa and western Oceania.