Handmade Theatre masks, projects and performances

Creates handmade theatre masks. These can be purchased for personal or professional use, and act as an excellent learning, teaching and performance tool for the actor.

Sets of workshop masks can be purchased alongside Theatre workshops in the physical techniques and methods specific to mask theatre.

Individual Masks can be commissioned for performance or to suit personal requirements. Commissions are designed individually in consultation with the customer.  

Projects and Mask Theatre performances are on-going.


 The illusion of a masked character 'coming to life' on the actors body or 'breathing' ,as it is sometimes referred to, can be so astonishing that it transports us to a childhood place of magic, where reality is an ever-shifting possibility fired by the imagination. It can be simultaneously disturbing and fascinating.

There is a science to this phenomena, which is now coming to the fore as a result of research being done into neuron-plasticity, which is involved with the notion of temporarily re-wiring the brain.
The amygdala is a section of the brain that is responsible for detecting fear and preparing for emergency events.What happens when we first see a mask is that our amygdala is engaged. The amygdala is situated in the Limbic section of the brain (sometimes referred to as the 'lizard brain' ). On seeing a mask coming to life, the limbic brain experiences a sense of  fear and our animal nature instinctively wants to fight or run, as a survival response to danger. However our logical brain (part of upper brain or the neo-cortex) tells us not to be so irrational and the social conditioning and intellect is engaged in telling us that the danger is only perceived, not actual. Thus the limbic brain and the logical brain engage in a decision making process. We don't run. But what we do do , as an audience, is instantly FEEL.

Masks were the first known artifacts to be made by humans. They have existed in every culture and in every period of recorded history. They carry with them a great mystery and superstition in some cultures and have been used in many different ways , not just theatrically. More recently they are being used as a therapeutic teaching tool, and have proved especially useful in working with autism.

Some of the various uses of masks are for Disguise, for Decoration, as a Training tool for actors, as a Trance-like dis-inhibitor, as an Agency of play, as a Cultural symbolic indicator of belief, for Role play, and as a Therapeutic tool.

The masks featured here are archetypal caricature masks and are created for the use of theatrical performance, for workshops and training in physical theatre techniques associated with bringing characters to life. They represent exaggerated traits of the human psyche.

Sally Elsbury


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Mask Matters. Caricature full and half face theatre masks for sale. Workshops. 

Handmade Archetypal Caricature Theatre Full Face and Half Masks for sale. Physical & Mask theatre workshops. Mask construction and design. Performance. Private and Shamanic mask Commissions.

 maskmattersCounty Cork, Ireland00353 830404944