Indonesian wayang kulit (shadow puppet) performance is one of the oldest and greatest storytelling traditions in the world and lies close to the heart of Javanese culture. These flat puppets, made from water buffalo hide, are elaborately decorated and perforated to cast spectacular shadows when used in performances that are usually based on classical literature with contemporary issues incorporated into particular scenes, and are always accompanied by a gamelon orchestra. An art of and for the people, wayang kulit remains a popular and significant form of cultural expression to this day.
This book describes a collection of gold and bronze leaf Surakarta-style wayang kulit including over 200 wayang characters, which are identified by name and briefly introduced, providing a glimpse inside the puppet box. 270 color illus.