TIRANA, February 19
This weekend, 20-21-22 February, go experience the beautiful Shkodra carnival, one of the biggest winter festivals in Albania. Every year, visitors from Albanian cites and tourists join the citizens of Shkodra to enjoy a host of activities for all ages, including parades, music shows, masked parties, etc.
The carnival of Shkodra dates back to 1861 and it symbolizes the spirit of fun and at the same time the irony of human nature. During communism, the effigy was called the big face (surrati i madh) and often it was given traits of known personalities.
The carnival isn’t only about fun and costumes. It also celebrates Shkodra’s crafting tradition of handmade Venetian Mask making using authentic techniques. Amid the effects of global warming, Venice Carnival has already started on the other coast of the Adriatic. Tourists don’t leave the lagoon without a Venetian mask, which is the main feature of the event. Yet, a few might know that some of the best handmade masks sold in Piazza San Marco are a ‘Made in Albania’ product.
Venice Art Mask Factory in Shkodra supplies handcrafted masks to a large market. The masks combine traditional techniques with new contemporary decoration. They have intricate details, bright colors, fancy feathers, gold leaf, and crystals that make them unique pieces of art. The masks are exported all over the world and sold in six shops in Venice. Volto, Colombina, Bauta, Arlecchino, Zanni, Cruise Mask, and many other ornamental mask models can be found at the workshop of successful entrepreneur Edmond Angoni.
Shkodra carnival and the mask factory are a unique experience that you won’t want to miss.
Photo Credit: Venice Art