We are thrilled to
tell you about our upcoming project. This summer 2013 we will be traveling
to Gothenburg, Sweden to work with our friend Hanna Wiskari and her friend
Nis Backvall. Nis is talented baritone saxphone player and storyteller. Hanna is an amazing soprano saxophone player. Check out her
website to listen to her music. http://www.hannawiskari.se/aboute.htm
The working title for our project is "Take a Second Look". For this project we will be developing a mask and music performance exploring traditional music and folk
stories. The stories we have decided to focus on are those of the trickster tales or shapeshifter. The Trickster character in folk tales are described as creator, teacher and keepers of magic.* Below are images of the masks I have made for this project so far. (*Animal Speak, Ted Andrews pg 260)
The first is based on the Coyote stories. Coyote for the Plains Indians was the trickster a character that is found in their folk tales. My focus when making this series was creating masks that had two or more characters in one mask.
Front view Coyote
Figure in Coyote
We met Hanna in New Zealand at a folk festival in 2005 and through the years have kept in touch. Each of us have had children and enjoy watching them grow up and are inspired by their constant discovery and wonder. As parents we wanted to bring folk music and art to children in a creative way. Hanna has shared with me a few Scandinavian folk tales and the following two masks developed from those. The first was a story of the belief that a Dragon lived in the water and circled the earth.
The next mask is the Näcken a character that in Scandinavian folk was found near forest lakes. It sometimes appeared in human form or as a horse and has some relation to mermaid stories. Hanna knows there have been numerous folk songs written about this character.