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Kathakali puppets

 
 

Kathakali has become synonymous with Kerala and a Kathakali mask or model is today considered representative of Kerala. Little models of the artform or its mask cast in plaster of paris or carved out of wood are popular souvenirs. The Kathakali puppet is a rich representation of the Kathakali vesham (costume) and varies in size from small curios to huge statues.
Kathakali, the 300 year old classical dance drama, involves mime, mudras and musical accompaniments and is based on mythology.
Capturing the human as well as super human characteristics, the Kathakali costumes and make up strictly follow certain representational rules.
The headgears and paint on the face vary for different characters. The costumes are distinct from other artforms in their billowing umbrella skirts, full sleeve blouses, heavy ornaments and large headgears.
The Kathakali puppet models have all these specifications. These models are readily available in handicraft emporiums across the state, and can be made to order in certain villages were the craftsmen live.

 
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