For my Theatre History class last week, I gave a presentation on the art of bunraku, a form of Japanese puppet theatre that has existed since 1600. Perhaps the most interesting part of bunraku is that there are 40 standard puppet designs used in the entire art form, with each puppet having a name and representing a different archetype. The puppet pictured here, for example, is named Yokambe, and his design is used for characters who are either servants or comic villains. If you would like to learn more about bunraku or see some of the other puppet designs, this website from the Japanese Arts Council has a lot of great information.
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These are such beautiful puppets and it really connects visually to Kabuki theater in Japan, which are so vibrant. I would have love to hear the presentation.