My journey creating and producing puppetry... trials, tribulations, inspiration and contemplation.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Fantastic Puppets

Wednesday, June 16, I took a day trip to Lexington, MA to the National Heritage Museum to catch the Jim Henson's Fantastic World Exhibit before it's final bow on the East coast at the end of this month. I had heard some casual fans say that they had wished there were more puppets in the exhibit but, if you are a true fan of Henson or just a fan of the artistic process, this exhibit had plenty to make you happy. When I first walked in and saw a 1970s full-bodied Kermit sitting in a display case, the 10 year old in me just stared and wanted to say hello to my old friend. It was wonderful to connect to that youthful awe again. The exhibit was dotted with gems such as Jim's original concept drawings and college-age poster designs. As a creative person, I could appreciate what a well-rounded artist and how amazingly talented this man was.

The old commercials played on loop in one room including this great Ideal Toys commercial from 1966 that featured some of the irreverent humor from the Muppets that we all came to know and love. As a puppet builder, it was wonderful to finally see to some of the great Muppet creations and study their design up close. I don't want to give everything away but, suffice it to say, it's something every Muppet fan should try to see. So far, the last booked leg of the tour is 10/30/10 - 1/23/11 at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. If you haven't seen it yet, I would highly recommend it.

Thursday, the 24th, I found myself in Brooklyn, NY taking in St Anne's Warehouse Labapalooza which featured 4 snippets from developing puppet artists. The artistry was inspiring and Lone Wolf Tribe's Hobo Grunt Cycle was phenomenal to say the least. Kevin Augustine weaved a beautiful narration with very little dialogue. The images were hauntingly beautiful and the theme of life, death and rebirth was captivating.


Nosimad Monston said...

I think its incredible how puppeteers are able to create such fantastic emotional range with minimal dialogue and a puppet. I've been trying my hand at it and its so much fun but so tough to get the acting down without the use of anything but your hand motions. I am a big muppet fan as well and think its totally cool you were able to get to see some of the original works plus a performance. Time well spent. If you get a chance, check out what i've been experimenting with as I'd love to hear the opinions of a fellow puppet fan. My hobby site is

David said...

The Monstons look great. Very creative. Nice work!