Masks have always been an important feature of the Venetian carnival. Traditionally people were allowed to wear them between the festival of Santo Stefano (St. Stephen’s Day, December 26) and the start of the carnival season at midnight of Shrove Tuesday. As masks were also allowed on Ascension and from October 5 to Christmas, people could spend a large portion of the year in disguise. Maskmakers (mascherari) enjoyed a special position in society, with their own laws and their own guild.
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Excerpt sourced Wikipedia 21 February, 2016
Venetian masks feature prominently in several films, including the film ‘Eyes Wide Shut’. Stores that supplied the masks include ‘Il Canovaccio’ in Venice. We are thrilled to have one of the founding members and ‘mask masters’ of ‘Il Canovaccio’, Marco Bassi, as a guest tutor at our mask workshops.