Thai Arts Masters: Nakhon Shadow Puppets
Thai PBS and Thailand Foundation proudly present “Thai Arts Masters”, where we explore the stories of master craftsmen from all across Thailand.
In this episode, we take a look at the “Nang Talung” (Small Shadow Puppets), an ancient art of light and shadow that served as the major form of entertain in the bygone days of Southern Thailand. Today, groups of craftsmen and performers are still dedicated to preserving this tradition.
We traveled to Nakhon Si Thammarat Province to meet with Master Watee Subsin. For years, the master has been carving leather into colorful, intricate puppets from his home-turned-museum. The puppets are more than props of entertainment. They possess living soul and are treated with reverence. The process of transforming plain leather into fine works of art also reflect the Thai craftsmen’s respect and appreciation for nature.