Tadaka Demoness Mask
Maskcraft, Assam

Rs. 7,500.00

Tadaka - a Yaksha princess-turned-demoness in the epic Ramayana.

Tadaka attempted to harass as many rishis as they could, by destroying their Yagnas with rains of flesh and blood. Brahmarishi Vishwamitra was especially at the receiving end of Tadaka's harassment. Unable to cope with her mischief any longer, Vishwamitra finally approached Dasaratha, the King of Kosala, for help. The King obliged by sending two of his four sons, the 16-yr-olds, Rama and Lakshmana, to the forest, charging them to protect both Vishwamitra and his Yagna. Rama shoot Tadaka 

Vishwamitra and the two princes came to Tataka's forest and the sage ordered Rama to kill the demoness to free the area from her terror. Rama was hesitant to kill her as she was a woman and initially maimed her, chopping off her hands so that she could not attack him further. Using her demonic powers, she changed form, disappeared and continued to attack them whilst remaining unseen. Sage Vishwamitra advised Rama, that as a prince, he had to carry out his duty regardless of his own personal reservations about killing a woman. Rama swiftly pierced her heart with his arrows. This act gained the young princes the blessings of not just Vishwamitra but also the blessings of all of the assembled sages in the yagnashala.

Masks are an integral part of the mukh-bhaona performances of Majuli Island in Assam.  Masks are a medium of creative expression used in different performances held during festivals, and in the Vaishnavite narrative theatre called the Bhaona. Deeply embedded in the bhakti movement, the origin of the Bhaona form of theatre is ascribed to the great Vaishnava saint, preacher and reformer Srimanta Sankaradeva. The mask or mukha forms an important component of the Bhaona performance, which helps in making the play attractive, expressive and in putting the message across.

Samaguri sattra is a sattra, rather a grihast or a family run sattra, a very well renowned sattradhikar famous for his exquisite work of mask making.   Located 15kms from Kamalabari is Majuli where the artists  make various puranic or mythological characters. Interesting how they built up a mask from natural things ,bamboo ,clay and cow dung.The masks of Majuli have a uniqueness.

These are made of clay, bamboo, cloth etc. Despite the size of the masks these are quite light in weight. Masks are made on all the characters of the Mahabharata, Ramayana, and Puranas.

Heritage
Maskcraft, Assam
Weight
1400 g

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