Oliver Hymans

2021 QEST Stanley Picker Scholar - Puppet making

Oliver is an award-winning puppetry artist and puppeteer; a craftsperson who has worked internationally across four continents, directing and designing puppetry in theatre, opera, dance, film and music videos. He received an MA in Scenography from Central Saint Martins in 2006, which covered all aspects of design for performance spaces. For the past 8 years he has developed his puppetry practice at The Little Angel Theatre, where he is currently an Associate Artist. His puppets have been performed at prestigious institutions such as Tate Modern, The National Gallery, the Museum of London and Camden Roundhouse.

A QEST Scholarship will allow Oliver to further develop his puppet-making skills, specifically by working on the traditional craft of wooden string/‌marionette puppet making. First he will attend a specialist three-week marionette design course at Puppet Craft, in Devon. His second course will be tuition with Stephen Mottram, learning about marionette making and the logic of movement, and finally he will have one-to-one training with a master carver, to focus on traditional ornamental wood carving techniques; transferable skills that Oliver will bring to his puppet making. 

Oliver’s aim is to become a leader in his field, contributing to the preservation of the puppet making tradition whilst also promoting a vision to progress the art form forward, exploring all the exciting possibilities that are yet to be discovered. 

My fascination lies in the power of the puppet to bring about empathy in an audience and in the transformation of everyday objects and materials into vehicles which tell stories about the human condition.