TITLE: Diablo Mask
TYPE: face mask
GENERAL REGION: Latin America
DESCRIPTION: Diablo (Devil) Mask
CATALOG ID: LAGT035
MAKER: Unknown maker in San Cristóbal Totonicapán
CEREMONY: Morality plays
AGE: ca. 1970s
MAIN MATERIAL: wood
OTHER MATERIALS: paint; nails; glass
Devil characters appear in several dance-dramas in Guatemala, mainly for entertainment or religious instruction. In the Totonicapán region, the Corrida de los Diablos (run of the devils) is a masked ceremony in which young men in body paint with devil masks charge through town to frighten the crowd. In the city of San Cristóbal Totonicapán, where this mask originates, devils are used in morality plays, dealing with such Catholic Church-approved topics as the struggle between an angel and devil for the soul of a sinner.
For more on Guatemalan masks, see Jim Pieper, Guatemala’s Masks and Drama (University of New Mexico Press, 2006).