'Diablada' dance mask - ROM2007_8963_1


'Diablada' dance mask

Maker: Quechua and Aymara
Medium:Plaster, cloth, wood, mirrors, light bulbs
Geography: Oruro, Bolivia
Date: c. 1955
35 × 38 × 47 cm
Object number: 975.142
Credit Line: Gift of Mr. W.A. Sturgess
On view
Gallery Location:Shreyas and Mina Ajmera Gallery of Africa, the Americas and Asia-Pacific
DescriptionThe Diablada, or Dance of the Devils, begins the forty-day run-up to Easter and portrays the story of a mortally wounded criminal forgiven by the Virgen del Socavon or de la Candelaria. Equally, the dance expresses the great hardship and danger of the local silver mine, where the devil embodies the life-giving but dangerous power of the inner earth. Miners dressed as diablos (devils) first appeared in the Oruro carnival in the 1790s. Today, leaders of the Diablada perform annually at the carnival in Oruro wearing the type of mask displayed here.
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