Thai puppetmaster and painter. Chakrabhand Posayakrit is an artist, and has exercised a profound influence on Thai puppetry. As a child he was vividly impressed by the hun luang (the royal rod- and sting– puppets) at the National Museum. After becoming a trendsetter in Thai arts he renewed his appreciation of Thai traditional rod puppetry (hun krabok) which he studied in the 1970s with Cheun Sakunkaeo (b.1905), a traditional puppeteer.
His first production was Phra Abhamani. Chakrabhand Posayakrit directed a group of artists, aristocrats, and newcomers seeking entry into the refined world where art, high society, and power intersect. The play was performed on 18 August l975 at the National Theatre under the sponsorship of Crown Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn. Ramakien (Ramayana, 1977) and Samkok (Tale of Three Kingdoms, 1982) were followed with more productions in 1990. He then began working on a production which would tell the history of the Thai-Burmese wars (Taleng Phrai or Defeating the Burmese), a labour for the last decades. He exhibited some of his own richly decorated figures that he was building for his Thai-Burmese epic at the Asia-Europe Puppet Festival held in Bangkok in 1998.
Chakrabhand Posayakrit was commissioned to restore and catalogue the hun luang figures in the collection of the National Museum.
Chakrabhand Posayakrit is the author of The Vicereagal Puppets (Bangkok: Bangkok Printing House, l997), and was named a Thai National Artist in 2000. His work is not about popularization, but perpetuates an elite aesthetic.
- Posayakrit, Chakrabhand. The Viceregal Puppets. Bangkok: Bangkok Printing House, 1997.
- Chakrabhand Posayakrit Foundation. http://www.chakrabhand.org. Accessed 3 May 2012.
- Virulrak, Surapone, and Kathy Foley. “Hun: Thai Doll Puppetry”. Asian Theatre Journal. Vol. XVIII, No. 1. Spring 2001. Special Issue on Puppetry. Honolulu: Univ. of Hawai’i Press, 2001, pp. 81-86. Issue Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/i247078