The story behind this bull head
This colorful Bull Head was handcrafted and hand painted by group of carefully selected Colombian artisans. Carved out of Red Ceiba wood, this mask was later painted with acrylic.
The zoomorphic masks are an emblematic element of Barranquilla’s Carnival. However, this object has also become an important element of the cultural identity of the region, and wooden animal heads are now also crafted as decorative objects. Most wooden heads are the result of the cultural mix between Africans, Indians and Europeans that started to take place in the 15th century.
The creative process of the animal heads starts with the selection of the raw material. It then goes through the design of the sketch of the piece and thus the carving of the wood, until creating the shape of the mask that will take life with the process of painting and decoration.
Amongst the different wood masks, those of tiger, donkey, alligator, bird and monkey stand out. But, one of the most emblematic in the dances of Barranquilla is the one of the bull of the Spanish. It started to take part in the festival at the end of 1874. With the help of the music and the dance, and through animal representations, myths, stories and visions of the culture of the Atlantic come to life.
Toro Miura workshop
Carving and decorating these masks is one of the main and most traditional economic activities of the village of Galapa.
Toro Miura workshop, lead by Manuel Pertuz, has been existing for more than 30 years. It is well known for the quality of its masks and decorative wooden animal heads.
Each wooden mask is totally handmade and thus unique. Therefore, you may find slight variations or imperfections.