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Wayang golek workshop

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Wayang kulit, shadow puppets, are Indonesia’s most well known form of theatre, but in West Java, the tradition is wayan golek, three dimensional wooden rod puppets that look not unlike European marionettes or Punch and Judy style hand puppets, except of course for the traditional style of the characters.

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In the larger cities like Bogor and Bandung, this is a dying art, but in the smaller villages such as Pangandaran, shows are performed more regularly, usually at festivals, weddings or circumcision ceremonies. Two puppet masters (dalang) who happen to be brothers have workshops that can be visited which also double as galleries and often put on a fascinating impromptu performance, all without any expectation of money (although tips are appreciated).

It all starts here. Photo taken in or around Wayang golek workshop, Pangandaran, Indonesia by Sally Arnold.

It all starts here. Photo: Sally Arnold

The skills from carving, painting and dressing the puppets to performing the shows are passed from generation to generation and in Pangandaran the most highly regarded dalang or puppet master is Pak Rojikin Supriadi Putra who runs ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 300 words.)

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