Caricature at Carnevale
Have you ever drawn a picture of a family member or friend in a funny way? If so, you may have drawn what is called a caricature.
A caricature is a drawing that represents a person in an exaggerated, insulting or comical way.
If you look closely at this drawing from the 1700s, you'll notice that the man's features almost look like a bird's. He has a very pointy nose (like a beak), skinny legs and "duck" feet that are pointing out to either side.
Caricature was very popular in Venice at the time. It played an important role in a Venetian festival called carnevale. The festival started the day after Christmas and continued into February. Like the man shown here, people dressed up in fancy and ridiculous costumes and masks. Humor was a major part of the festivities. Comedy groups performed on street corners and in theaters. Visitors came from all across Europe to participate in the festival. It still takes place today, more than 200 years later.