The Marionette Maker


The Marionette Maker


Mixed media installation including caravan, marionettes, robotics, audio, and lighting

Approximately 14 minutes, looped

184" (height) x 222" (width), x 130" (length)

Cardiff & Miller

Cardiff and Miller’s kinetic installation The Marionette Maker comprises a full-scale vintage caravan that houses a myriad of characters in a haunting environment. The interior of the trailer reveals the fantastic world of a marionette maker (a marionette himself), who is hunched over a desk drafting designs attempting to create life around him. A full replica of Cardiff lies sleeping at one end of the trailer surrounded by small moving creatures in a scene reminiscent of Gulliver’s travels. Perhaps the absent inhabitant of the caravan, the user of the dirty coffee cups, the real maker himself amuses himself by trying to create life while waiting for his sleeping companion to wake.


  • Originally produced for the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, 2014
  • Build: Robyn Moody, Maryke Simmonds, Morag Rahn-Cambell, Carlo Crovato, Jeff Person, Eric Kutschker Risa Bissenden
  • Production Organization: Zev Tiefenbach
  • Tonmeister: Titus Maderlechner
  • Mannikin by; Lindala Schminken FX Inc.
  • Marionette Maker Theme composed by Cardiff and Miller
  • Percussion: Connor Johnson
  • Toy piano, Guitar, Piano, Synths: Cardiff and Miller
  • Bass, Piano: Titus Maderlechner
  • Op. 6: VI “None But the Lonely Heart” music composed by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky with words by Goethe.
  • Performed by Galina Vishnevskaya & Mstislav Rostropovich
  • Thanks to Bowers and Wilkens.

Related Publications

Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller

Eds.: Elisa Tellez, Zev Tiefenbach


Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Monterrey

ISBN 978-607-9355-14-2