The Magic of Masks & Puppets at Ushaw

Art and architecture News from our houses Things to see and do

There’s a brand new exhibition on at Ushaw Historic House in Durham.



The Magic of Masks and Puppets brings together dramatic, intriguing and comic masks and puppets that will appeal to art lovers, enthusiasts and families alike.

The exhibition includes puppets from every era and culture, including shadow puppets from Greece, Turkey and Indonesia, Javanese Wayang Golek rod puppets, Rajasthani marionettes, giant ‘Russian doll’ figures from the Rostov State Puppet Theatre and of course Punch & Judy. As well as historic objects, the exhibition includes puppets from film and television, including Morag the Highland Cow, formerly co­presenter of the BBC’s Fully Booked and the infamous crawling baby animatronic puppet from the cult film Trainspotting.

Masks in the exhibition include examples in leather worn in Italian Commedia dell’Arte, character masks from Nepal and a set of masks made at Scottish Mask & Puppet Centre and used in a version of The Monkey King, the Chinese legend popularised by the children’s television series.

Entry to The Magic of Masks & Puppets is included with Annual or Day Pass.

The exhibition is on display 11am – 4pm daily, from Saturday 1 July – Sunday 10 September 2023.

Sign up for our newsletter

Read more of our stories, receive exclusive content, and find out what’s on.

You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the link in the footer of our emails. For information about our privacy practices, please visit our privacy policy.

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Become a Historic Houses member

Explore the nation’s heritage from just £68 per year.

Hundreds of the most beautiful historic houses, castles, and gardens across Britain offer our members free entry.

Also: receive a quarterly magazine, enjoy monthly online lectures, get exclusive invitations to buy tickets for behind-the-scenes tours, and take up a range of special offers on holidays, books, and other products you might like.

Join now
Forde Abbey in Somerset