Some of the world’s most compelling festivals are those in which the attendees don masks. Masks add an element of mystery and magic to proceedings, as well as a frisson of danger. The unknown is always slightly frightening, isn’t it?
The Carnevale di Venezia in Venice features a scinitllating array of white faces with cut-out eyes and colourful adornments. For La Diablada, in Peru and Bolivia, revellers put on masks made to look like Lucifer, complete with red flesh and goat-style horns.
In Binche, Belgium, party goers dress as a character called Gilles and parade through the town throwing oranges at the onlooking crowd!
Truly, masks and parties go together in many terrific and even terrifying forms.
But, it’s part of a party that we express the chaos and darkness that we cannot in normal, civilised areas of life, perhaps.