Boy on a Buffalo Water Puppet

This boy on a buffalo is part of a water-puppetry ensemble that includes a master of ceremonies called Teu, a dragon, a lion, and a fairy. He has moveable parts and thick colourful painted exterior. The buffalo’s head is joined by a strip of rubber-tyre inner tube – an ingenious method of recycling materials. This puppet appears in a pastoral scene of tending buffalo. The origins of water-puppetry are thought to date to the 12th century although it is possible that it was a folk art that developed even earlier in the rice-farming villages of north Vietnam. The stories enacted include spiritual and popular themes that are closely related with rural life.

Artist Name
Dang Van Thiet
Date/Period
c. 1996
Region
Hanoi, Vietnam
Dimension
Object size: 002: L56.0 x W25.0 x H31.0 cm, Object size: 001: L32.0 x W20.0 cm
Accession No.
2001-01189
Material
Wood, rubber, metals, paint
Collection of
Asian Civilisations Museum
Category
Theatre Artefacts