TITLE: Llamero Mask
GENERAL REGION: Latin America
ETHNICITY: Quechua and Aymara
DESCRIPTION: Llamero (llama herder) Mask
CEREMONY: Carnival (La Llamerada)
MAIN MATERIAL: tin
OTHER MATERIALS: dyed vegetable fiber; polyester fiber; paint
The Llamerada (Dance of the Llama Herders) is an annual ceremony in several towns in the Altiplano region of Bolivia, Peru, and northern Chile, usually incorporated into Carnival. The dance includes both male and female llama herders dancing in a group with rattles or toy llamas (women) or slings (men). Women wear no masks, but the men wear traditional Andean clothing and a mask with pursed lips. The facial expression represents the llama herder whistling for his llamas to follow him.
For more on Bolivian masquerade, see Peter McFarren ed., Masks of the Bolivian Andes (La Paz: Editorial Quipus/Banco Mercantil SA, 1993).