puppet flu, puppets flew

Heather Henson curated a very successful third annual Handmade Puppet Dreams film festival at RISD – a series of 11 shorts featuring a wide range of puppet styles; brand new work by Lyon Hill debuted. The figures were incapable in ways that made one long for (recognize) capability – that invited our empathy (the desire to share capacity)… their fingers couldn’t quite grip, they could only pretend to eat and drink, their footsteps and crawling were painfully articulated, their febrile heads were light of thought (the flu; old brains), or, in the example of a powerful Bunraku tiger, were driven by a monadic thought that we could neither penetrate nor persuade.


In a time of obsession and damage, when heads are too light or too obsessed, a time that begs for shared burden, in a time like any time at all – the friable angels, strung to or otherwise powered by a motive above gravity and out of frame – are extraordinary teachers.

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