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PENASAR

The second mask I carved in Bali, Penasar Kelihan is the stock character that serves as comic counselor to Rama in the Mahabharata legends. The mask is carved of Pulai wood, with goat hair pelt for his facial hair eyebrows and mustache. His top hair is made of twisted horsehair. This is the only mask I sanded and painted in the Balinese style preferring to spend as much time carving as possible. The mask was first painted with 10-15 layers of thin white paint the consistency of watercolor paint allowing each layer to dry before adding the next. Every few layers we would sand these coats with fine grit sandpaper. The red color is also applied in several thin layers until it too becomes opaque. Then the wrinkles and lips were added using a brush Ketut made of a few strands of goat hair. Several coats of acrylic gloss give the Balinese masks a wonderfully rich reflectivity.