Academic journal article Language Arts

Ashley Bryan's Puppets

Academic journal article Language Arts

Ashley Bryan's Puppets

Article excerpt

Ashley Bryan's Puppets Written by Ashley Bryan Photographs edited by Rich Entel Atheneum, 2014, unpaged, ISBN 978-14424-8728-4

When Ashley Bryan was a child, he walked the sidewalks of New York City with his sister, and they found cast-off items they re-created into new objects. As an adult, Bryan has continued this tradition, roaming the shoreline of Cranberry Isles (off the coast of Maine), picking up shells, bones, driftwood, fabric, or sea glass. He uses glue and thread, a sprinkling of African folklore, plus a lot of imagination, to turn the discarded treasures into hand puppets with complementary poems. All 30 puppets are unique and full of character. One titled "Jojo" has a head made out of an abandoned glove with five ponytails or extended fingers. Dark button eyes and a circular bone mouth indicate Jojo is telling a story: "In every finger of my glove/I tap tall tales of peace and love. …

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