TITLE: Viejo Verde
TYPE: mask
GENERAL REGION: Latin America
COUNTRY: Guatemala
SUBREGION: Suchitepéquez
ETHNICITY: Mayan
DESCRIPTION: Viejo Verde (Dirty Old Man) Mask
MAKER: Unknown
CEREMONY: Danza de los Viejitos
AGE: ca. 1950s-1960s
MAIN MATERIAL: wood
OTHER MATERIALS: paint

The Danza de los Viejitos in Guatemala has several incarnations. This is one of the oldest dances in this region of Guatemala and is usually performed to honor the patron saint of the village and to poke fun at the village elders. This specific mask originates in Suchitepéquez Department of coastal Guatemala and was danced for many years. It represents a viejo verde, or “dirty old man,” because of his slightly lewd expression. Notice the many darkened teeth, suggesting tooth loss or decay from advanced age.