Children of Japan

Children of Japan
Courtesy, R. John Wright

The Jumeau 201

The Jumeau 201
Courtesy Theriault's and Antique Doll Collector Magazine

Hinges and Hearts

Hinges and Hearts
An Exhibit of our Metal Dolls

Google+ Followers

Tuxedo and Bangles

Tuxedo and Bangles

A History of Metal Dolls

A History of Metal Dolls
Now on Alibris.com and In Print! The First Book of its Kind

Alice, Commemorative Edition

Alice, Commemorative Edition
Courtesy, R. John Wright

Translate

Emma, aka, La Contessa Bathory

Emma, aka, La Contessa Bathory
Her Grace wishes us all a Merry Christmas!

Annabelle

Annabelle

Emma Emmeline

Emma Emmeline
Our New Addition/fond of stuffed toys

Cloth Clown

Cloth Clown

Native American Art

Native American Art

the triplets

the triplets

c. 1969 Greek Plastic Mini Baby

c. 1969 Greek Plastic Mini Baby
Bought Athens on the street

Iron Maiden; Middle Ages

Iron Maiden; Middle Ages

Sand Baby Swirls!

Sand Baby Swirls!
By Glenda Rolle, courtesy, the Artist

Glenda's Logo

Glenda's Logo
Also, a link to her site

Sand Baby Castaway

Sand Baby Castaway
By Glenda Rolle, Courtesy the Artist

A French Friend

A French Friend

Mickey

Mickey
From our friends at The Fennimore Museum

2000+ year old Roman Rag Doll

2000+ year old Roman Rag Doll
British Museum, Child's Tomb

Ancient Egypt Paddle Doll

Ancient Egypt Paddle Doll
Among first "Toys?"

ushabti

ushabti
Egyptian Tomb Doll 18th Dynasty

Ann Parker Doll of Anne Boleyn

Ann Parker Doll of Anne Boleyn

Popular Posts

Tin Head Brother and Sister, a Recent Purchase

Tin Head Brother and Sister, a Recent Purchase
Courtesy, Antique Daughter

Judge Peep

Judge Peep

Hakata Doll Artist at Work

Hakata Doll Artist at Work
From the Museum Collection

Follow by Email

Japanese Costume Barbies

Japanese Costume Barbies
Samurai Ken

Etienne

Etienne
A Little Girl

Happy Heart Day

Happy Heart Day

From "Dolls"

From "Dolls"
A Favorite Doll Book

Popular Posts

Jenny Wren

Jenny Wren
Ultimate Doll Restorer

Our Friends at The Fennimore Doll and Toy Museum

Our Friends at The Fennimore Doll and Toy Museum

Baby Boo 1960s

Baby Boo 1960s
Reclaimed and Restored as a childhood Sabrina the Witch with Meow Meow

Dr. E's on Display with sign

Dr. E's on Display with sign

Dolls Restored ad New to the Museum

Dolls Restored ad New to the Museum
L to R: K*R /celluloid head, all bisque Artist Googly, 14 in. vinyl inuit sixties, early celluloid Skookum type.

Two More Rescued Dolls

Two More Rescued Dolls
Late Sixties Vinyl: L to R: Probably Horseman, all vinyl, jointed. New wig. R: Effanbee, probably Muffy, mid sixties. New wig and new clothing on both. About 12 inches high.

Restored Italian Baby Doll

Restored Italian Baby Doll
One of Dr. E's Rescued Residents

Dolls on Display

Dolls on Display
L to R: Nutcrackers, Danish Troll, HItty and her book, Patent Washable, Mechanical Minstrel, Creche figure, M. Alexander Swiss. Center is a German mechanical bear on the piano. Background is a bisque German costume doll.

A Few Friends

A Few Friends
These dolls are Old German and Nutcrackers from Dr. E's Museum. They are on loan to another local museum for the holidays.

Vintage Collage

Vintage Collage
Public Domain Art

The Merry Wanderer

The Merry Wanderer
Courtesy R. John Wright, The Hummel Collection

The Fennimore Doll Museum

The Fennimore Doll Museum

Robert

Robert
A Haunted Doll with a Story

Halloween Dolls Displayed in a Local Library

Halloween Dolls Displayed in a Local Library

The Cody Jumeau

The Cody Jumeau
Long-faced or Jumeau Triste

German Princesses

German Princesses
GAHC 2005

A Little PowerRanger

A Little PowerRanger
Halloween 2004

The Island of the Dolls

The Island of the Dolls
Shrine to Dolls in Mexico

Based on the Nutshell Series of Death

Based on the Nutshell Series of Death
Doll House murder

Popular Posts

Total Pageviews

A lovely dress

A lovely dress

Raggedy Ann

Raggedy Ann
A few friends in cloth!

Fennimore Doll and Toy Museum, WI

Fennimore Doll and Toy Museum, WI
Pixar Animator's Collection

Little PM sisters

Little PM sisters
Recent eBay finds

Dressed Mexican Fleas

Dressed Mexican Fleas

Really old Dolls!

Really old Dolls!

Friday, December 9, 2011

An Avid Collector; I feel a book Coming On!

See, below!

Recently, the media has been having a field day with the mysteries surrounding the reclusive heiress Huguette Clark, who died at age 104 on May 24, 2011. She was the heiress to a $400 million copper fortune left to her by her father United States Senator William A. Clark, who died when she was only 21. She was married only once, briefly, in 1928 (a marriage that lasted only 2 years, until August 11, 1930 ) and the last known photo of her was taken in 1930. Although having lavish mansions in Connecticut and California plus several appartments on Park Avenue in New York, she spent her last 20 years living in a hospital room (and by some reports, never even once set foot in her Connecticut properties). She seems to have two wills, and there seems there will be an intense estate fight between her relatives and some of her advisors.

Hugette Clark Had A Huge Doll Collection

I found all of this vaguely interesting....but I didn't really sit up and take notice until MSNBC wrote an article that detailed some of Ms. Clark's spending in her last years, and the information clearly showed that Ms. Clark was a major doll collector! According to the very first words of the MSNBC article, Ms. Clark spent "More than $3 million dollars on dolls." The article further goes on to detail her spending on dolls as follows: MS. Clark spent $2.5 million at Au Nain Bleu, a well-known and historic doll shop in Paris, in 110 separate payments from 1997 to 2006. The largest payment was for $82,513 in February 2004. She also spent $729,000 at doll auction house Theriault's (which holds the world record for most expensive doll ever sold at auction), in 21 payments from 1997 to 2009. The largest payment was $232,680 July 2007.


If Hugette Clark Spent That Money on Art or Cars, It Wouldn't Seem Eccentric or Strange


The entire tone of the MSNBC article was a bit snarky about how Hugette Clark spent her money--the title was "The 1 percent of the 1 percent: How Huguette Clark's millions were spent." They also called her $43 million checking account a "magical bottomless checking account." Well, if she had over $400 million, then that is about 1/10 of her wealth. How is that odd if you look at it that way? Sure, we'd all like a magical bottomless checking account with a few ten million in it, but hey, it was her money and her wealth, not ours.


As for the way her spending on dolls was portrayed--you know what? I'm sick of doll collectors being portrayed as strange and eccentric and culturally irrelevant. To me, perhaps Ms. Clark's doll collection was the only thing about her that wasn't eccentric. Ms Clark was a very wealthy woman, and if she collected dolls, the $3 million spent on dolls seems reasonable. Very wealthy people often spend many, many millions more on one impressionist painting for their collection. $3 million would not buy very many cars for a wealthy man's car collection like Jay Leno's. Remember, that $3 million was spent over a period of roughly 10 years, or $300.000 per year. If Ms. Clark's passion was dolls, given her wealth, how was that even of note? The only way that this would be of note is if Ms. Clark herself did not purchase the dolls, or did not get to enjoy them or see them. No information to that effect has yet come to light, in fact the MSNBC article quotes a friend of Ms. Clark's (um...how was she a recluse if she had a friend?)as saying that "dolls were "her closest companions."


Antique Dolls and Childhood Memories



Obviously, I didn't know Ms. Clark, but I can speculate a bit about her doll collection. At Theriault's, she was probably buying fine antique dolls of historical importance--dolls that can be several hundred years old, scarce and rare. I would love to see that collection! As for the dolls from Au Nain Bleu, it should be noted that Ms. Clark was born in Paris. Au Nain Bleu has been selling fine dolls and toys since 1836. It is not much of a leap to suppose that Ms. Clark's father bought her dolls from Au Nain Bleu when she was a child. If so, like many doll collectors, perhaps buying dolls from Au Nain Bleu was helping Ms. Clark remember her father and what it was like to receive dolls from Au Nain Bleu as a child, much in the way that my collecting vintage Barbie dolls brings me back to happy childhood times.

What Will Happen To Her Dolls Now?



It is unclear what will happen to Ms. Clark's beloved dolls now. I wish that she had made provisions for a doll museum in her will, much the way she made provisions (in at least one of her wills) for an art museum in her Santa Barbara home. One of her wills seems to have left her doll collection to her main private nurse, Hadassah Peri. I hope that Ms. Peri, if she does receive these dolls, can do something with them that would help the late Ms. Clark share her passion with the world.

No comments:

Post a Comment