You are welcome to meet characters from my collection of papier-maché marionettes based on Hector Malot's classical book « Sans Famille ».
« Sans Famille » is one of my favorite books since childhood. Recently my volunteering in Children's Hospital in Riga led me to think that disfunctional families hadn't changed so much since 19th century's France. My heart hurt, images of unhappy children hunted me till I started to make this collection.
I use a varied collection of fabrics for my marionettes – vintage, designers' collections, flea-market founds, etc., to create a truly unique story and feeling for each puppet. I pursue a painting-like texture and surface, my goal is to create a painting which becomes alive. Every scrap of lace or a glass bead in a marionette has a special story or a good reason to be here.
When I first saw a collectors doll I was thrilled and saddened at the same time. Saddened, because children were never allowed to play with these beautiful creatures.
So I made a promise to myself to make my puppets as wonderful as I can and to allow children to play with them. What's the use of childhood, if there are no miracles around ?
I kept my promise and my marionettes are created in a children-friendly house, each detail is fixed very carefully. My daughter, her friends and my pupils are allowed to meet these precious objects of art, these meetings are a truly magical moments for both sides. This is an important part of my creative philosophy - our children are intelligent enough to face a great art since their earliest days. My artistic philosophy also claims that the puppet theatre is a magical place, worthy to be played with these time-consuming objects of art.
Puppets from « Sans Famille » collection are a portrait-marionettes.
If you, like me, have a beloved child or an adult to whom you whould love to give an unforgettable gift, contact me to order a portrait-marionette. You will be kindly asked to send me some photos of the model (I promise to guard your privacy as if it was mine) and the description/photos of preferred clothing (I promise to use the best of my fantasy too). It takes about 4 – 6 weeks to create a marionette, depending on the complicity of clothes, hairstyle, movements. Feel free to ask any question by e-mail : .
Photos by Anete SKUJA