The Barong Landung Masks by Master Mask Maker Ketut Sukerta are a very special pair. They are essentially unique. Considered to be amongst some of the rarer masks of Bali. The pair displayed here is part of Sawidji Gallery’s Collection. For a more detailed account of the Barong Landung, its history and process of making the masks please visit our ‘The Living Masks of Bali’ Articles.
For more information on Ketut Sukerta, our Master Mask Maker and Carver, please visit his Artist Profile. His works are remarkable and clearly shows the Artists’ experience and specialisation.
The Barong Landung are a pair. A limited number are available for special orders by application. The process of making the Barong Landung Masks is the same as the one documented in our Living Masks Articles. Therefore, only one Barong Landung pair may be made at any given time and for limited periods during the year.
Learn more about the Topeng Babad of Bali
By definition, the Barong is a panther-like creature and character in Balinese mythology. He is the king of the spirits, leader of the hosts of good, and enemy of Rangda, the demon queen and mother of all spirit guarders in the mythological traditions of Bali. The battle between Barong and Rangda is featured in the Barong dance to represent the eternal battle between good and evil.
The Barong Landung Masks differ from other Barongs of Bali.
In the case of the Barong Landung, they are shaped liked giant dolls. A man and a woman. The male Barong Landung is known as Jero Gede, and his appearance is frightening. The mask is coloured brown to black. His teeth will jut outwards in an extreme fashion, like fangs. Whilst on the other hand, the female Barong Landung is Jero Luh. Whose expression has a touch of comical humour. Her forehead and chin will protrude outwards slightly. The mask is coloured white to cream.
The history of Barong Landung explains why this manifestation differs from other Barongs of Bali..
The story goes, that the royal couple were deeply in love but after many years had not been blessed with children. In need of a successor, the King went to Mount Batur to meditate and seek guidance. As he meditated there he met and took as his second wife the Dewi Danu. The daughter of the Goddess of Lake Batur. It is after this second marriage that conflict continued to haunt the family of the King Jayapangus. In summary, The Goddess of the Lake, angry to see her daughter hurt and betrayed. Because of this She destroyed King Jayapangus and his first wife Kang Cing Wie.
From Curse to Blessing
But, King Jayapangus is well respected and loved by his people, as was his Queen Kang Cing Wie. He was a benevolent and respected leader of his kingdom. Having him taken away from them, It was the effect on his people, their grief and loss that made the Goddess realise she had acted too rashly. The Goddess of Mt Batur then made a decision. For the King and Queen to be able to return to their kingdom in times of strife and great need. They will be reawakened to provide purification and protection for their people, as a couple together.
There are, as you can imagine, several variations of the legend. However, the one we have here is a well known story. However, this serves as an apt summary of how the Barong Landung came to be.
If you are interested in ordering a pair of Barong Landung Masks by Ketut Sukerta, but have any questions please send us an email. We will have a confirmation from Ketut on available times and expected lead times for the completion of a pair.
If you are certain you wish to order our Barong Landung Masks, simply add to cart and process your order. We will contact you via email to advise when the process of making the masks will commence. Details from Ketut will be forwarded to you within 1-2 working days.
Generally, it may take 4-6 weeks from order confirmation to dispatch order.
Sawidji Gallery will provide order progress updates, via our instagram channel and/or your preferred communication. For those interested in being apart of the process of making the masks.