The Squeaking Tribe

Medusa Large Marionette


Medusa – I’ve always been a fan of the Greek myth of Perseus and Medusa, the serpent-haired maiden whose gaze would turn flesh to stone. And like many of these stories, I always found myself on the side of the villain rather than the hero who always appeared vainglorious and somewhat shallow.

Medusa was one of three Gorgon sisters and the only one of them born not just mortal but beautiful. Attracting the attention of the god Poseidon, she incurred the jealous wrath of Athena who in turn cursed her with a hideous new countenance and snakes for hair, a face so foul it turned to stone all who saw her. She was eventually beheaded by Perseus who used his shield as a mirror to counteract her ‘ability’ and who then continued using her still-potent head to dispatch his enemies before eventually gifting it to Athena. There’s actually a lot more to Medusa’s tale following her death at Perseus’ hands, not the least of which casts her as the mother of Pegasus, the winged horse which sprang from her lifeblood as she lay dying.

History aside, it is the image of her as a beautiful, ethereal, much-misunderstood woman of power which I continue to celebrate through designs such as this. The hair-of-serpents I’ve rendered more symbolic than literal, focussing on a range of colour schemes, textiles and objets-de-art to capture instead the glamour and majesty inherent inside her as a maligned mistress of the occult.

Large-scale Artworks

Fully articulated marionettes and interactive Art!

When I first began making marionette puppets back in 1996 (22 years young), I was living with a potter and a drum-maker in the foothills of Adelaide, South Australia. With access to a whole range of clays, I found myself one day sculpting a hollow head and face. “If I added clay hands and feet,” I thought to myself, “I’d have the basic counter balances for a puppet!” Which prompted two simple questions: a) Of what little marionettes I’d seen, why did so many of them look so cheap and crappy, and b) Why did none of them work!?

My challenge clearly was to make a good looking puppet that would actually perform. As the Internet was yet to become a household fixture and Google not yet a technocrat’s pipedream, I resorted to local libraries whose resources on the subject was terribly lacking. Luckily, the process for making a marionette was a time consuming one with many separate factors; hand sculpting with clay which needed days (sometimes weeks) to dry before firing, sewing and soft-sculpture creation of the ‘skeleton’, costuming and assembling of the basic character, construction of an appropriate crosspiece before stringing and detailing the final finished piece. In all, a process that required a 3-6 weeks work, an opportunity of course which allowed a LOT of extra time for dreaming up new puppet characters to make!

Every marionette I made, I was learning and discovering new ways to make them quicker and more effective and with every idea that ensued, I was having more and more ideas of other puppets I could make. The avalanche of ideas which consumed me in that first year alone could keep me busy crafting for a decade at least; having kept that passion alive for over twenty-five years, I easily have enough ideas to fill multiple lifetimes!

From these humble beginnings, I have since developed a whole range of different interactive effigies which borrow from the traditional methods of Puppetmaking while at the same time improve on ideas of articulation to create marionettes which everyone can use and indeed, with a little practice, manipulate like a professional. Sharing this with others and inspiring a new generation of artists and puppeteers to reignite the tradition is probably the greatest joy in this life I have made and now share with my wife, Sara.


Doll-form/ full marionette height approximately 145/180cm or 55/70in.


1 in stock