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The Japanese Puppet Animation Master: Kihachiro Kawamoto

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Kihachiro Kawamoto was born in Tokyo in 1925. He has made puppets since his childhood. In middle age, he started to create his animations by mainly using puppets. His puppet animations are descended from a Japanese puppet show, Bunraku. Jiri Trnka, Czech animation director, advised Kawamoto to learn it while Kawamoto was staying in Prague. Kawamoto realized that souls were inspired into puppets, when Japanese puppeteers operated them. In Kawamoto's animations, passions doomed to die were put into puppets. His animations were awarded many times in several world animation festivals.
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Keywords: Bunraku; Japanese; Kihachiro Kawamoto; animation; puppet; soul

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2003

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  • Asian Cinema is a seminal journal, which has been published since 1995 by the Asian Cinema Studies Society under the stewardship of Professor John Lent. From 2012 Asian Cinema will be published by Intellect as part of our Film Studies journal portfolio. The journal currently publishes a variety of scholarly material - including research articles, interviews, book and film reviews and bibliographies - on all forms and aspects of Asian cinema. The journal's broad aim is to advance understanding and knowledge of the rich traditions of the various Asian cinemas, thereby making an invaluable contribution to the field of Film Studies in general.
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