Maskverkstad

masks, puppetry, clown, Etc.

I want to start by asking what is the difference and what does mask work and puppetry have in common?
Jag vill börja med att föreslå som temat: vad har arbetet med mask och med dockteater gemmensamt? och vad skiljer dom åt i spelstylen?

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ja, vad är skillnaden, masker uttrycker man ju nåt helt annat med! ^^
More than 20,000 years ago, the mask was a disguise perhaps for a hunter to conceal his approach to his prey. The mask was also worn by the Shaman, some of which were hinged and jointed, an evolutionary step away from the puppet. Strings were used in some cases - one notable mask was one representing an eagle which opened up to reveal an inner image of a supernatural being in human form. When a single masked dancer performed for his group, it became a performance and a move for the mask to become a puppet.
Over the centuries, the hinged and jointed mask was held in the hands in front of the body and was moved about by manipulating strings. To-day mask work and puppetry is used more and more in the theatre, film and television and has and does also make a big contribution to Carnival
I believe that semi-modern theater requires more, more actors bigger sets and more paraphernalia, than puppeteers do. The mask being a way to introduce a specific character or a feeling or perhaps the lack of emotion. Though this leaves the actors bereft of face displays of emotion!

Most often to be viewed in historical settings, such as masked balls, in big produktions, or famous plays.

I wonder how Carnivale began? does anyone know?
As most of the historical facts, the origin of Carnival is a subject of speculation. What I have found is that carnival seems to come from the Saturnalias that were a celebration to Saturnus in Rome. A time of chaos before the start of the new year. In the old Roman calender the year started in mars, thats why we have still September as being the 7th month, October the 8th, November the 9th and December the 10th, Januari was the 11th and Februari the 12th and the name Februa means cleaning time. It was a time when people gott rid of all the old things to start the new year. In Medieval time this was converted to Quaresma, the Catholic church gave it a religious character talking about the sacrifice of Jesus. At this time people had to fast, pray and prepare for Eastern, or the new time, the resureccion and so on. But just before this offering time and at the end of the old time it was a time of chaos, where all the laws of the universe and of mankind were upside down. That was Carneval. The last time to have fun before the cleaning and sacrifice towars the new year. Carneval means goodbye to meat. Carne=meat, vale=good bye. I supose the origins are far older than the Saturnalias, but that is all I found.
Re Carnival I have found the same background as you have Augusto, but additionally I found a source which refers to 'Karneval' coming from the Latin 'carnus navalis' - the ship of fools. In Babylon a decorated ship on wheels full of fools in close fitting caps with donkey ears and little bells attached, was brought to the temple in praise of the God Marduk, In Egypt it was brought to the Goddess Isis. From these Jesters, the Carnival 'Fools Guilds' were formed.
Thank you John. I didn't have that information. Why did they brought a ship of fools in those occasions? what does fools had to do with Marduk or Isis? It would be very interesting to know the relation.
For the origins of Carnival there is a very good site on the internet which outlines Carnival, including the Ship of Fools.
See http://www.serve.com/shea/germusa/karneval.htm
The page is headed KARNEVAL-FASTNACHT-FASCHING. I found it by putting Ship of Fools into Google search.
In a study doing research on language in bonobos (something like a chimpanzee but a different species), the researchers decided that, like children, the animals needed a boogie man to scare them when they weren't behaving. They decided that this would be a gorilla. They would show the bonobos videos of a gorilla and talk about how scary it was. Sometimes they would take the animals for walks and have someone dress up as a gorilla who they would spy on through a window. After this had been established, the researchers gave the bonobos a gorilla doll and a gorilla mask. The bonobos would put the mask on and, unprompted, actually act like the gorilla, changing their walk and mannerisms and try and scare each other. The researchers would give the bonobos the doll and have them try and scare each other with it as well. The animals would play with the mask on their own, without being encouraged by the researchers, but never played with the doll in the same way unless asked. Perhaps this is an insight into the evolutionary beginnings of mask and puppets.
This is very interesting, Preston. I wonder why they used more the mask than the doll. Maybe the doll was not as scary as the personification of the gorilla with the mask and then less fun than scaring each other with the mask.
I think it has more to do with the origins of masks and puppets, the debate over which came first. Did primitive people take the mask they were wearing and put it on a stick to make a puppet or take the head off the puppet and put it on their face to make a mask? It may be cognitively more natural to imagine oneself as another character with the idea of the mask in mind then to imagine the image of the doll which really is not very much like the thing its supposed to be in terms of size or material. So it was a more natural thing for the bonobos to use a mask than a puppet. The puppet may need more of a cognitive leap.

A relationship that I have found recently is in the physical fitness that you need for both styles of performance.  You need to be in good physical shape and be aware of what your body is doing at all times for both styles of performance.  Another area of research that I am investigating is the use of mask and puppet from the late 1800's on as a way to bring spirituality back into theatre.  There is something inherently spiritual about an object, something that has no life, being brought to life.  It is supernatural or mystical to us.

I agree with you Seth that there is a magical element in giving life to an object. Thinking about what Preston said about the bonobos behaving with a mask and a doll, it might be that the diference is in giving life to an object with a puppet and personifying a character with a mask. I supose that for the bonobos, the mask wearer was more alive than the doll, the doll was still an object they didn't give life to. The puppeteer gives life to an object and an actor personifies a character with a mask.

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