Museum of Anthropology Shadows, Strings, and Other Things

Comments 55 by Rebecca Bollwitt

The Museum of Anthropology (“MOA”) at UBC presents an immersive exhibition animated with light, sound, and moving images — Shadows, Strings and Other Things: The Enchanting Theatre of Puppets, on display from May 16 to October 14, 2019. 

String puppets. By unknown makers (Sinhalese). MOA Collection: Eh149, Eh147, Eh164, Eh144, Eh142. Photo by Alina Ilyasova, courtesy of Museum of Anthropology at UBC.

Shadows, Strings, and Other Things at the MOA

When: May 16 to October 14, 2019
Where: Museum of Anthropology (UBC, 6393 NW Marine Dr, Vancouver)
Exhibit Opening Reception: May 16, 2019 at 7:00pm

Curated by Dr. Nicola Levell, an associate professor of museum and visual anthropology at the University of British Columbia and sought-after independent curator, this enchanting exhibition details the role puppetry traditions have played from generation to generation in the transmission of cultural knowledge, stories, and values around the world. Visitors will have the opportunity to view more than 250 handcrafted puppets drawn from MOA’s collection — the largest in Western Canada — plus, new acquisitions from China, Brazil, Italy, Java, the UK, and France revealed to the public for the first time.

In Shadows, Strings and Other Things, visitors are welcomed into a grand theatrical experience where five theatre stages demonstrate each main puppet type: shadow, string (marionette), rod, hand (glove), and stop-motion animation. Stages are framed by opulent curtains and lavish, hand-illustrated backdrops, and depict scenes from various puppet plays. The exhibition also offers a glimpse behind the scenes, with displays of workshop settings and storage spaces. Other extraordinary puppets are presented in glass cases, while video booths play moving pictures of different puppetry traditions from around the world.

Many of the puppetry traditions on display are recognized and celebrated by UNESCO as part of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. This exhibition spotlights how puppets dramatize the human experience in many parts of the world. Shadows, Strings and Other Things is a unique and magical opportunity for visitors of all ages to explore the historical and dynamic qualities of puppetry.

Win Passes & More

I have a pair of passes to give away to this exhibition PLUS $50 to spend at the amazing MOA gift shop. Here’s how you can enter to win:

  • Leave a comment on this post (1 entry)
  • Click below to post an entry on Twitter
[clickToTweet tweet=”RT to enter to win @Moa_ubc passes for Shadows, Strings, and Other Things (on May 16 to Oct 14)” quote=” Click to enter via Twitter” theme=”style6″]

I will draw one winner at random from all entries at 12:00pm on Tuesday, May 21, 2019. Follow MOA on Twitter and Facebook for more information about this exhibition and more.

UPDATE The winner is Gillian!

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55 Comments  —  Comments Are Closed

  1. MaryseThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 4:38pm PDT

    In a contest between dinosaurs (Jurassic Quest at the Vancouver Convention Centre) and puppets … it’s the puppets, in a landslide. I’m really excited about ‘Shadows, Strings, and Other Things’. I had no idea thee was such a large collection at the MOA. Good luck to me and everyone else who enters!

  2. Debbie WThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 5:24pm PDT

    would love to go to the MOA

  3. TiffThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 6:55pm PDT

    After many years at UBC, I never ended up going to the MOA… Would love to finally go!

  4. EdThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 7:27pm PDT

    Would love to go!

  5. LeahThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 7:44pm PDT

    I have never been to the MOA and would love to go!! This looks amazing

  6. HershThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 8:20pm PDT

    Wow, interesting.

  7. Karen MillerThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 9:03pm PDT

    Oh, yes!

  8. Gregory MillerThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 9:04pm PDT

    This sounds great. I’d love to attend.

  9. JonathanThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 9:05pm PDT

    I want!to see this!

  10. Tazim DamjiThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 9:06pm PDT

    This looks like a great exhibit!

  11. Bruce M.Thursday, May 16th, 2019 — 9:09pm PDT

    “Like a doll, like a puppet with no will at all
    And somebody told me how to talk, how to walk, how to fall”
    -ABBA, ‘Marionette’

  12. CheukThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 9:33pm PDT


  13. Gillian BurnsThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 10:41pm PDT

    The exhibit sounds amazing I have always loved puppets and different kinds of puppetry. I hope that I can be picked as I would love to take my husband as he is always supportive of all things I try to do.

  14. CressidaThursday, May 16th, 2019 — 11:48pm PDT

    Would love to visit MOA

  15. Will.Friday, May 17th, 2019 — 8:15am PDT

    M.O.A. always a treat! This is a fine, fun example.

  16. AlexandraFriday, May 17th, 2019 — 8:19am PDT

    Wow. I would love to go and see these puppets.

  17. RoseFriday, May 17th, 2019 — 8:19am PDT

    Can’t wait. Good luck!

  18. A.HFriday, May 17th, 2019 — 8:19am PDT


  19. AriaFriday, May 17th, 2019 — 8:22am PDT


  20. Gregg KendrickFriday, May 17th, 2019 — 10:10am PDT

    Would love to take the kids to this 🙂

  21. KristyFriday, May 17th, 2019 — 8:49pm PDT

    I would like to see this exhibit.

  22. Shelley ButcherFriday, May 17th, 2019 — 11:44pm PDT

    It’s been a few years since I’ve visited MOA. I would love to visit again.

  23. Kim ReesSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 11:58am PDT

    I just love puppetry

  24. RinoSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 12:49pm PDT

    Would love to visit the museum of anthropology

  25. WesSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 5:53pm PDT

    Love the MOA!

  26. CarolSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 6:07pm PDT

    Such an interesting museum and this look like a really interesting exhibit.

  27. VeraSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 7:19pm PDT

    Sounds like a great exhibit to take the grandkids to. Have not been to the Musuem of Anthropology for a least 2 decades ? so thanks for the chance to win these tickets!

  28. KateSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 7:46pm PDT

    This looks like such a fascinating exhibit! Such a beautiful museum too ?

  29. PeterSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 7:46pm PDT

    I would love to go to MOV.

  30. AggieSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 9:36pm PDT

    It will be fun, educational and interesting!

  31. Sunshine HSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 9:51pm PDT

    This looks like a fascinating exhibit.

  32. VeronikaSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 10:17pm PDT

    Looks fun! I haven’t been to moa for 20 years!

  33. LindaSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 10:34pm PDT

    I love the MOA. It’s one of my favourite places to visit.

  34. AndaSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 11:09pm PDT

    Would love to visit the MOA again, and see Susan Point’s work especially!

  35. donnapetroffSaturday, May 18th, 2019 — 11:47pm PDT

    would love to go

  36. Fiona AuSunday, May 19th, 2019 — 9:57am PDT

    Pick me pick me!! I would love to go. Thank you Miss 604!!

  37. HectorSunday, May 19th, 2019 — 11:26am PDT

    Super excited about the world of puppets and puppeteers. Would love to take my family to this beautiful museum!

  38. HectorSunday, May 19th, 2019 — 11:27am PDT

    Super excited about the world of puppets and puppeteers!

  39. HectorSunday, May 19th, 2019 — 11:30am PDT

    Love puppets so much that married a puppeteer…?

  40. Hector OrrSunday, May 19th, 2019 — 11:31am PDT

    Love puppets so much that married a puppeteer…?

  41. KellySunday, May 19th, 2019 — 4:53pm PDT

    Would love to go back to the MOA!

  42. bonnie lamSunday, May 19th, 2019 — 7:05pm PDT

    Cool. Good luck to you all. Huggies.

  43. JeanSunday, May 19th, 2019 — 9:06pm PDT

    MOA exhibits are always interesting!

  44. RobSunday, May 19th, 2019 — 10:44pm PDT

    Sounds like it will be a great time. Looking forward to heading out to UBCland soon

  45. Andy C.Monday, May 20th, 2019 — 2:42am PDT

    Interesting theme, neato!

  46. DaneMonday, May 20th, 2019 — 10:15am PDT

    love to go

  47. DaleMonday, May 20th, 2019 — 3:00pm PDT

    Would love to go

  48. Jessica Roberts-FarinaMonday, May 20th, 2019 — 4:46pm PDT

    I love the magic of puppets.

  49. Jason BMonday, May 20th, 2019 — 5:07pm PDT


  50. DianaMonday, May 20th, 2019 — 5:37pm PDT

    How cool would going to see puppets be!!! Want to win!

  51. sarahTuesday, May 21st, 2019 — 12:20am PDT

    so cool!

  52. AnnaTuesday, May 21st, 2019 — 9:23am PDT

    I want to see these puppets

  53. Sandhya PrasadTuesday, May 21st, 2019 — 10:34am PDT

    Wow this would be amazing to go and see

  54. Marisa. PWednesday, May 22nd, 2019 — 10:18pm PDT

    The MOA is such a great place to visit.

  55. TianaThursday, May 23rd, 2019 — 8:13am PDT

    Need to go back again

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