Khenis Jharkot village Mustang Nepal
MASK OF THE DAY
Khenis , detail
The moud's Khenis faces have a strong similarity with some of the so called primitive or shamanistic masks of the nepalese more remote areas.
Kagbeni is a fortified two gates medioeval village located in a strategic place at the cofluence of two river valleys, situated in a fertile area.
During the 19th century the human guards of the gates become superfluous and were replaced with two human figure moulded from clay each named KHENIS or Ghost Eaters, primitive iconographic subjects probably remanants of the ancient BON religion.
Kagbeni and Jharkot are among the vert few places in the Nepalese bhuddist area of infleunce in which are moulded complete protective primitive figure as well as the Khenis.
Smilar moud representations, but limited to simple molded faces, can be found, however, one in the Mustang village of Tangbe, in which there is a face modelled in the moud, carved above the entrance of the village, to symbolise probably an ancestor, documented by Robert Powell.
The other provided by Henri Bancaud, represent's human grotesque faces moulded on the earthen walls of the village of Stod-pa in the Nymba area, probably 'used' to keep away the deceased spirits (according the opinion of B.Goy, 'Wood sculpture in Nepal Jokers and Talismans' 5 Continents edition)