Атанас Згалевски

Mummers / Кукери

Year unknown / Size 112x96cm

Kukeri are elaborately costumed Bulgarian men, and sometimes women, who perform traditional rituals intended to scare away
evil spirits. Closely related traditions are found throughout the Balkans and Greece (including Romania and the Pontus).
The costumes cover most of the body and include decorated wooden masks of animals (sometimes double-faced) and large 
bells attached to the belt.

Around New Year and before Lent, the kukeri walk and dance through villages to scare away evil spirits with their costumes and the sound of their bells. They are also believed to provide a good harvest, health, and happiness to the village during the year.