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Venetian Jester Masks

venetian-jester-masks

Venetian Jester and Jolly Masks for Masquerades and Halloween

The Venetian jester mask is the classic male joker face with red and black velvet tines tipped with gold bells. This is handcrafted and fashioned after the centuries-old clown masks worn by professional actors in the traveling improvisational theater Commedia dell'Arte, (Italian, literally meaning "Artistic Comedy") which dominated European Theater from the sixteenth through the eighteenth century. There were also female jesters, but the most famous one was Mathurine, known for her barbed wit, who presided in the French court in the 17th century during the reigns of Henry II, Henry IV, and Louis XIII.

In the Medieval Ages, the jester held an important royal position in the King's court, not only as an entertainer but as an adviser, even on political matters of the kingdom. The jester was empowered to bluntly criticize anyone and anything without fear of retribution. He was the only privileged member of the royal staff who can tell it like it is, liven things up and influence social changes.

This lens is a tribute to the Venetian jester mask, one of the many different masks which make its appearance in Carnival of Venice and in modern day celebrations, like Mardi Gras, Halloween, masquerade balls, New Year's Eve, and proms.

Masks and the Commedia dell'Arte links - Masks require gestural acting to indicate emotions

Masks were used in Commedia dell Arte for two reasons - one was to help identify the characters. Stock characters (the same characters are used in each show) in the street theaters were usually the masters, the servants and the lovers. Each character has his own distinct mask, mannerisms, and walk. The performances were improvised and revolved around the topics of adultery, jealousy, love and old age.

The second purpose of the masks was to limit the view of the actors, making them act out their emotions with improvised gestures within the contraint of the masks. While wearing the masks, the actors have to make the audience laugh without speaking, hence, gestural acting was the way the players created their characters and spoke to the audience.

Photo Credit: BoALensMan

  • The Commedia dell'arte
    An overview of the Italian improvised drama known as Commedia dell'arte; the subjects of Commedia dell'arte and the significance of the masks.
  • Commedia dell'Arte Criticism
    Commedia dell'Arte Criticism and Essays
  • Commedia performance of emotion
    Perfoming emotion and the commedia dell'arte in seventeenth-century France.
  • Medieval Jesters
    Medieval Jesters! Get Medieval facts, information and history about Medieval Jesters. Fast and accurate facts about Medieval Jesters.

Our Maschera del Galeone Carnival Mask - 9-point jolly mask

Our Maschera del Galeone Carnival Mask - 9-point jolly mask

Our Maschera del Galeone Carnival Mask - 9-point jolly mask

Fun, mystery, thriller with unlikely partners

Joker Venetian Masks

The Joker is Wild!

'Il Buffone', or the Jester, is one of the most traditional and the most popular of Italian Carnevale masks. Venetian masks are sought after by collectors all over the world. These paper-mache masks are handcrafted, handpainted and decorated with the same attention to detail as the artisans of centuries ago. The velvelty tines tipped with the jingle bells is the signature look of the jester mask with or without the collars. All are proudly made in Venice, Italy and come with a certificate of authenticity.

Halloween Joker Venetian Mask

The Jolly is the female version of the Venetian Jester mask.

The Jolly is the female version of the Venetian Jester mask.

The Jolly is the female version of the Venetian Jester mask.

Jester and Jolly Masks

A Perfect Pairing for a masquerade ball

Create a sensation on your next New Year's Eve party. Come as a pair of jesters wearing these stunningly rich and expressive Venetian masks. And when the party is over, hang them as wall decors until the next occasion beckons you to put them on again. Handmade and elaborately decorated by artisans in Venice, Italy.

Masquerade Black Jester Wearable Mask for Men

Black Full Face Jolly Sinfonia Venetian Mask

Interesting links on Venetian masks

Pink Jolly Arcobaleno + Bav Venetian Mask

A Gem of a Book loved by historians

Red Jolly Arcobaleno + Bav Venetian Mask

Red Flower Jolly Fiori Venetian Masquerade Mask

Blue Gold Flower Jolly Fiori Venetian Masquerade Mask

Purple Jolly Lillo Venetian Masquerade Mask

Green Jolly Arcobaleno + Bav Venetian Mask

Green Flower Jolly Fiori Venetian Masquerade Mask

Discover the history of Mardi Gras

Gold Venetian Jolly Masks

The Mardi Gras color Gold symbolizes Power

Gold emboldens any masquerade mask and adds richness and opulence. These are handpainted and decorated to add drama and make heads turn.

White Gold Jolly Lillo Venetian Masquerade Mask

Si Lucia Masquerade Jolly Ale Décor 2 Red Carnival Mask

Si Lucia Masquerade Jolly Roma Green Carnival Mask

Si Lucia Masquerade Venice By Hand Large

Salute Carnival Mask

Carnevale di Venezia (Carnival of Venice) - Life is a theater, we are all wearing a mask.

If you missed the yearly carnival in Venice, Italy, experience the magic and splendor of the celebration with these videos. The masks and the costumes are in every colors of the kaleidoscope, dazzling the eyes of the spectators and revelers. See for yourself. You may consider booking a trip there next year.

An Uplifting Book for Children

Pharley Doll Book companion

Pack of 3 Red Fabric Pixie Fairy Jester with Nutcracker Christmas Ornaments 14"

  • Twelfth Night - Analysis of Fools
    Twelfth Night - Analysis of Fools A fool can be defined in many meanings according to the Oxford English Dictionary On Historical Principles. The word could mean "a silly person", or "one who professionally counterfeits folly for the entertainment of
  • Shakespearean fool - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    The Shakespearean fool is a recurring character type in the works of William Shakespeare. Shakespearean fools are usually clever peasants or commoners that use their wits to outdo people of higher social standing.

Fun, lively and brings the jester to life

Take this quick poll - It is a human need to laugh

Standup comedians are the modern day jesters who crack jokes, criticize, cajole, and tell like it is, regarding every subject under the sun. The humor usually hits home for most of us. Yet, we continue to enjoy them. Robin Williams is one of my favorites.

Jolly masks from eBay - Wear it on Halloween

Be the belle of the ball.

I would love you hear from you

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on January 07, 2016:

I was just looking at my pictures of these masks. We had so much fun trying out several of them.

lionmom100 on January 10, 2013:

We had the wonderful fortune to be in Venice last year just after Carnivale. Confetti still littered St. Mark's Square and the walk next to the Doge's Palace and Grand Canal. We did not buy any masks, but did see many while there. And we purchase a small mask of Murano Glass which we have displayed on our book case. Venice was our favorite city, topping Florence and Rome. And I would love to go back.

SteveKaye on December 30, 2012:

Thank you for publishing this info on the masks. Their history is fascinating.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on October 08, 2012:

We were in Venice in the spring and purchased the ones we liked. You have shown them here well.

Mamaboo LM on August 05, 2012:

I am very fascinated by your lens. It's intriguing across the board. Thank you for your lens, and be blessed!

Ninche on May 28, 2012:

Such a nice lens, enjoyed it very much.

TeacherSerenia on May 27, 2012:

Gorgeous lens - I have always loved the Venetian carnivale masks. You have some absolutely gorgeous pictures here

nikitakapoor on May 14, 2012:

Nice lens, loved it! http://www.squidoo.com/what-to-see-in-india/159063...

Hope from Skokie, Illinois on April 01, 2012:

Enjoyed this lens enormously!

JoshK47 on March 30, 2012:

I *love* Venice's Carnival celebration - so beautiful, colorful, and classy. Blessed by a SquidAngel!