Ugo Untoro - Indonesia

"Belajar Menari"
mixed media technique
dimension variable, 1996-2002
courtesy of Cemeti Art Foundation

The Concept

Puppets provide a broad space for exploration, in terms of form, media,
technique, colour and movement. From exceptionally sophisticated folk art
(particularly in Asia), puppetry has developed into a form of popular and
experimental entertainment. From the characters of Arjuna, Punch and Judy,
and Karaghiosis, we now have Unyil, Kermit, Elmo, Po and Tinky Winky. The
puppeteer is actor, author, designer, producer, sculptor, painter and
director all rolled into one.

Puppetry as a media of expression is an attempt to 'bring to life' in
animate objects through dramatic movement. More than that, puppetry is the
manifestation of a desire to create and control. Designing and moving the
puppets to appear as obedient and compliant living creatures satisfies a
desire to control a small world, to rule and own it.