Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Art of Play: An Italian Marionette Theatre, 1734

Marionette Theatre
Italian, 1734
The Victoria & Albert Museum
Isn’t this truly astounding? Here, we have an Eighteenth-Century Italian marionette theatre. This masterpiece features a center stage with two side panels which had previously been used to as doorways onto the backstage area.
The theatre comes with two settings on the interior: one featuring card playing figures, and another with a scene of the Plaza at Venice.

Part of a set that includes twelve puppets in all, this is the height of the Commedia dell'arte, and shows us the kind of setting in which our Mr. Punch’s ancestor, Pulcinella, had some of his earliest performances. The suite also includes several pieces of furniture and assorted as props.

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