TITLE: Javanese Cakil
TYPE: mask
GENERAL REGION: Asia
COUNTRY: Indonesia
SUBREGION: Java
ETHNICITY: Javanese
DESCRIPTION: Cakil Mask
MAKER: Unknown
CEREMONY: Topeng Dance Drama; Wayang Wong Dance Drama
AGE: 1930s
MAIN MATERIAL: pule wood
OTHER MATERIALS: paint

This mask represents a character known as Cakil, a crab-like demon with a gigantic jaw, who represents persistent greed. It is used in both the Topeng and Wayang Wong. The Topeng dance drama of the island of Java centers around the political history of the region and are called Babad Dalem (Chronicles of the Kings) or Raket. The most popular story centers around the national hero Panji, whose consort Dewi Chandrakirana is abducted by the powerful King Klana Sewandana of Bantarangin.

The Wayang Wong dance drama retell parts of the Hindu epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata. These epics revolve around the god Rama and his battle with the demon king Ravana, who has abducted Rama’s wife, Sita. In the end, Rama retrieves her with the help of the wily monkey god, Hanuman.

The mask would be worn by the masquerader biting down on the leather strap to hold the mask in place. This leaves the character mute throughout the performance.