Collection Number 111
Title Petruk joged/Petruk dances
Time 1970 circa
Time Acquisition 1998
Place Unknown (probably Central Java)
Place of Acquisition Gito Antique Shop, Magelang-Jogjakarta Rd, Jumoyo, Salam Magelang, Indonesia
Name Painter (Place and Year of Birth-Death)
Size 38cm x 25cm
Current Location Palermo, Italy (Home)
Description One of the Punakawan, Petruk dances in a tayub performance with a joged dancer with sensual movements

while the others play in the gamelan ensemble. The tayub is a group of Javanese musicians and singer-dancers, who during the performances also involve/invite the spectators to dance along with them.

Punakawan are characters of the wayang kulit (shadow puppets) performances in Java who can best be described as jokers or clowns since they act in the comedy play performed in between the main story as intermezzo. They are often portrayed in glass paintings in various situations often as social or political commentaries.

More specifically, the Punakawan are servants to the hero of the story, regardless of who that hero is. They consist of a family with four members:
1. Semar, also known as Ki Lurah Semar (the ‘father’ of the other three Punakawan)
2. Gareng (the eldest son)
3. Petruk (the second son)
4. Bagong (the youngest son)

An old wise man, ex-member of the Pandawa/Pandava Army in the Mahabharata epic, who now lives in peace in the village of Jalatunda, raising orphans in his house. For Gareng, Petruk and Bagong he is just like a real father. As dhanyang (guardian spirit) of Java, he is considered divine and regarded by some as the most sacred figure of the wayang set.


The eldest adopted orphan in the Punakawan House. He’s a mature and calm one. Lives close to nature. He is portrayed as with a short stature, often bending (to indicate caution) and with a limp leg.


Portrayed with a long nose and long limbs, Petruk is seen as a ‘nerd’ who is always experimenting with inventions.


The somewhat short and fat Bagong, but his eyes and mouth are wide, which depicts his presumptuous, yet honest and powerful character. He is like an energetic child who acts bravely yet recklessly, with the dream of becoming a superhero.