|KEY WORD : art history / sculptures|
|Masks worn when performing certain of the *bugaku 舞楽 dances developed from pieces imported from the Asian continent during the 6c and 7c and accompanying imperial court music, gagaku 雅楽. The majority of extant masks date from the 11c to 13c, although some good copies were made during the Edo period. In size and expression, bugakumen stand midway between the large, foreign-looking gigaku masks *gigakumen 伎楽面, of the Nara period and the smaller, more delicately modeled masks of noh drama *noumen 能面 of the 14c to 19c. The largest of the bugakumen, like the *Ni-no-mai 二ノ舞 masks housed in Itsukushima Jinja 厳島神社 (H29.8cm, W21.9cm, D16.1cm), Hiroshima prefecture, cover the crown of the head and ears, but smaller masks, such as *Ayakiri 綾切 and *Korobase 崑崙八仙, approach human proportions (approximately H19cm, W16cm, D10cm) and cover only the facial area. Just as sa-no-mai 左舞 (Dances of the Left), and u-no-mai 右舞 (Dances of the Right, are performed alternately in pairs, the masks are paired as the themes of each dance in a pair tend to be related. The masks for the quiet dances hiramai 平舞, tend to have gentle expressions, to be smaller in size and simple in construction, but the masks for the military dances bu-no-mai 武舞, and dynamic dances hashirimai 走舞, are large in scale. Characteristic of many masks used for energetic dances are their realistic highlights, such as animal hair affixed to represent eyebrows or mustaches and the mechanical or moveable parts including rotating eyes *dougan 動眼; dangling chin *tsuriago 吊顎; detached chins *kiriago 切顎; or movable face plates *doubou 動貌. Other surrealistic effects on some bugakumen are achieved with swinging noses and rope hair. The more elaborate construction is something bugakumen share with the much later puppet heads used in the bunraku 文楽 theater. With the exception of one extant dry lacquer *kanshitsu 乾漆, mask of *Ryouou 陵王 from about the 8c in the Fujita 藤田 Art Museum, Osaka, all known bugaku masks are carved from wood, commonly cypress hinoki 檜, or paulownia kiri 桐, although other woods sometimes are used. In general, the masks are of one piece, but a number have been assembled from smaller units, often split along the grain and rehinged to reduce distortion due to wear and humidity changes. Sometimes the wood grains of various parts are set against each other. The most meticulous finishing involves painting the carved wood support, front, and back with a ground *kataji 硬地, generally of *sabi-urushi 錆漆 (i.e., lacquer mixed with a kind of clay *tonoko 砥の粉) that makes a hard, smooth surface. Sometimes this is further solidified by a layer of cloth held down by lacquer, which is a technique derived from dry lacquer sculpture. The masks are then painted with kaolin *hakudo 白土, and colored with earth (mineral) pigments. Most masks with finishing of this sort date from the 12c or 13c, the height of bugakumen production. Sometimes artists dispense with the kaolin coat and color the lacquer to serve as the outer coating. In later masks, mostly those from the Muromachi period and those produced in provincial or country workshops, the lacquer is painted directly on the wood in a technique close to that used for noumen. Extant bugakumen can be divided into two distinct types: those of orthodox form found in temples or shrines connected with the court during the Nara and Heian periods, and provincial variations produced from the Kamakura period on and often made by amateur carvers influenced by other performing traditions. The largest number of orthodox, old bugaku masks belong to Houryuuji 法隆寺, Toudaiji 東大寺, Tamukeyama Jinja 手向山神社, and Kasuga Taisha 春日大社 in Nara, as well as Shitennouji 四天王寺 and Sumiyoshi Taisha 住吉大社 in Osaka. Itsukushima Jinja, which is located south of Hiroshima prefecture, and Atsuta Jinguu 熱田神宮 in Aichi prefecture also have good collections, as does the Tokyo National Museum. At least some of the old masks seem to have been produced in sets. For example, all those housed at Tamukeyama Jinja and dated 1042 share a basic style and simplified painting technique in which kaolin was applied directly to the unfinished wood and the back left untouched. The majority of the bugakumen are unsigned. From those that do bear an inscription, including the name of the carver, we know that they were made for the most part by professional sculptors of Buddhist statues *busshi 仏師, notably by Jouchou 定朝 (?-1057; see *Jouchouyou 定朝様) and members of the Kei school *Keiha 慶派, including Unkei 運慶 (?-1223) and Joukei 定慶 (late 12c-early 13c) whose 1148 *Sanju 散手 mask at Kasuga Taisha shows exceptional realism and plasticity. Shamon Gyoumyou 沙門行明 (second half of 12c), who worked for the Taira 平 clan, made a number of masks for Itsukushima Jinja. Other bugaku mask carvers include Inshou 印勝, Inken 院賢, and Shigisan Gyouen 信貴山行円. Extant bugakumen include: quiet masks for hiramai ; *Shintoriso 新鳥蘇, *Chikyuu 地久, *Taishoutoku 退宿徳 and Shinshoutoku 進宿徳, *Ouintei 皇仁庭, Korobase, Ayakiri, *Kotokuraku 胡徳楽, *Ama 案摩, Ni-no-mai (emimen 咲面, haremen 腫面), *Saisourou 採桑老, *Soriko 蘇利古. Military masks for bu-no-mai ; *Shinnou 秦王, Sanju, *Kitoku 貴徳. Miscellaneous masks ;*Tendou 天童, *Shishi 師子, *Somakusha 蘇莫者, *Bosatsu 菩薩, and *Sessen 石川. Dynamic masks for hashirimai ; *Konju 胡飲酒, *Batou 抜頭, *Genjouraku 還城楽, Ryouou, and *Nasori 納曽利. For early illustrations of masks in use.|
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