Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Venetian Masks (Carnival of Venice: 31 January to 17 February 2015)

Yesterday, I posted about the Book Spotlight of Laura Morelli's Authentic Arts Series: VENICE Travel Guide. Here is a little background about the masks and I thought I'd share them with you. Venetian masks have always intrigued me! The Carnival of Venice (or il Carnivale) takes place from 31 January to 17 February 2015.

The baùta or baùtta

The baùta is the quintessential Venetian mask, worn historically not only at Carnival time but any time a Venetian citizen wished to remain anonymous, such as when he may have been involved in important law-making or political processes in the city. The simplest of the traditional Venetian mask types, the baùta is a stark faceplate traditionally paired with a full-length black or red hooded cloak called a tabàro (or tabàrro), and a tricorn hat, as depicted in paintings and prints by the Venetian artist Pietro Longhi. Most baùte were made of waxed papier-mâché and covered most of the face. The most prominent feature is a distinctive aquiline nose and no mouth. The lower part of the mask protruded outward to allow the mask wearer to breathe, talk, and eat while remaining disguised.


In the Commedia dell’Arte, Colombina played the role of maidservant. The Colombina is a half-mask that covers the forehead down to the cheeks, but leaves the mouth revealed. Originally, it would have been held up to the face by a baton in the hand. The Colombina is often decorated with more feminine flourishes, from gilding to gems and feathers, but both men and women may wear it.

Many thanks to Laura Fabiani from Italy Book Tour for the opportunity to be a part of Laura Morelli's book tour. Please visit the other blogs for the Italy Book Tour for Authentic Arts: VENICE Travel Guide for more reviews and giveaways.

Thank you, too, for stopping by! Your comments are most welcomed.


P/S: For more updates, LIKE me on my Facebook pages at Alice Teh and The Weekend Traveler, OR FOLLOW me on Twitter and Instagram. See you there!