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VAMMATAR (Sister of Hurt) by artist Ulla Anobile

Cactus Gallery LA

VAMMATAR (Sister of Hurt) by artist Ulla Anobile

$ 50.00
Paper mache, driftwood, acrylics, yarn
6 1/2" x 4 1/4"

Vammatar is the sister of Kivutar, according to Finnish folklore, and believed to be the creator of mental and emotional maladies. It was also believed that she could be chased away by reciting a spell, preferably one stating her origins. Here is my rough translation of one such spell, this one probably a newer one, since the reciting of the origins is missing. When making this tiny mask, I felt rather sympathetic and thought that since she had suffered so much hurt, she was now handing it out to others.

Vammatar, difficult woman,
Maiden cold by nature,
Who came here from the North,
Settled here from the land of the dead.
You have brought us a shapeless pain,
an illness with no fleshly form,
And put it into our heads,
To spoil even the best of minds.
You have dealt us the strangest symptoms,
And given us the chilliest hearts,
You have thrown delusions to the weakest,
And given dark minds to those already evil.
Vammatar, difficult wife,
You, hostess with the darkest shape,
You, sneaky keeper of hurts,
You, caretaker of delusions,
Let go of your grasp of me,
I have already endured my share,
In my troubles I cry bloody tears,
I am now sweating in death's grasp.
Be merciful to this human,
Chase away this grudge of death,
Free little me from my misery,
And take back what belongs to you.

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