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Jakarta Post

Slamet Gundono: Imagination through grass

  • Ganug Nugroho Adi


Surakarta   /   Fri, April 9 2010   /  11:58 am

Courtesy of Slamet GundonoBorn Gundono, he received Slamet as his forename from his primary school teacher. “It was only to make it longer and more stylish,” said Slamet Gundono, who was fond of wayang (puppet) shows as a child.  Although his father was a wayang kulit (leather/shadow puppet) master in Tegal, Central Java, Gundono was not seriously engaged in this art as a youth, because the puppeteer profession used to be linked with drinking and debauchery. This sturdy man chose to study in a madrassa (Islamic school) in Lebak Siu, but it was at this school that his interest in wayang was rekindled.   In 1999, he set up a community, “Sanggar Wayang Suket” (the Grass Puppetry Studio), in Solo, Central Java, where he revolutionized this type of wayang art mostly regarded as coming to a standstill. Since then, his approach to the wayang suket he recreated has fluctua...