Mexico

Authentic Mexican masks, fakes & decoratives

The first mask is called a Parachico and is an authentic Mexican dance mask in the collection of Bryan Stevens who has www.mexicandancemasks.com. Here’s what he has written.

“The Parachicos dance is most famously performed in the town of Chiapa de Corzo in the Mexican state of Chiapas. It is said to honor three Catholic saints—Saint Anthony, Our Lord of Esquipulas, and Saint Sabastian. The costumed dancers wear wooden masks with bearded Caucasian faces, they carry handmade tin maracas that are painted silver, and on their heads are headdresses made of woven ixtle (or istle), a fiber obtained from the agave or yucca plant. Their headdresses are decorated with colored ribbons.”

I won’t show you a fake. They are often artificially aged and can look very authentic, but they often cost way more than they are worth.

Decorative is a term used to describe masks made for collectors, shops and art galleries. The one shown here is called a Barbone. Most of them are carefully made in the state of Guerrero and can be more impressive than this example. There are also many other decoratives that are beautiful and interesting. I like to collect them. Unfortunately, most decoratives are not so good and are sold by the thousands to the many tourist that come to Mexico.

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