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Mask contest from El Güegüense | Mar 29, 2008

Several masks presented at the contest, amongst which the one winning third place
The three first places and several special mentions were acknowledged this morning, on Saturday, March 29, in the Palacio Nacional de la Cultura, in the award ceremony for the national contest of masks from El Güegüense. The contest took place several months ago, and was organized by the Nicaraguan Institute of Culture (INC). It brought together colorful artisinal work, made by artists from different regions of the country.
The prizes were handed over by the president of the INC, Luis Morales, and by the members of the jury, consisting of big figures in the world of art, such as painter Róger Perez de la Rocha, well-known Juanita Bermudez, and others.
First place went to Bertalina Arburola, from Diriamba, who made a wooden mask. Second place was for the papier-mâché mask made by Silvio González, from León. Javier Gallegos, from San Juan de Oriente, became third, with his mask made of ceramics. Afterwards, several special mentions were made of works that stood out.
After the award ceremony, the exposition of the masks of the finalists was inaugurated. This exposition is set up in the Galería Rodrigo Peñalba of the Palacio Nacional de la Cultura.
Luis Morales said that this competition is linked to other activities dealing with El Güegüense, such as upcoming contests in choreography, essays, and other fields. It also served as promotion for legislation which will help to globally protect and guard the works of El Güegüense (music, images, etc.)
“El Güegüense is oftentimes wrongly presented, erroneously publicized, and used without considerations by companies,” said Morales. He also explained that a special advisory committee has already been formed, consisting of experts, traditionalists, and authorities from the government and from the Institutes of Tourism and of Culture, as well as delegates from UNESCO, to help carry out a multitude of activities.
To find out more about the comical dance “El Güegüense o Macho Ratón”, please read our special on this topic.