Saturday, December 29, 2012
Friday, December 28, 2012
Doll Museum: Doll Museum: Nativity Sets and St. Francis: Doll Museum: Nativity Sets and St. Francis : When I was in grade school, my parents used to drive me past the Fist Baptist Church on Xmas Ev...
Doll Museum: More Doll History by Laura Starr; Dolls and Educat...: I still can't type well; bad hands. So, read but forgive! These are telling and important quotes the UFDC should adopt at p. 233 from Chapt...
I was at an estate sale today, and ran into an old friend. She used to have a shop called De Kleine Winkle, or Little Store. Oh the dolls and antiques my mother and I used to find there, Nancy Anns mint in their original boxes, a 3' plust Minierva celluloid head, all original, dressed as a Scots Highlander, many art dolls and pieces of china, old lace, a 1920s photo in a guilt frame of a group of women dressed in 1880s styles. It was wonderful. She said she was glad to see I was still dolling, and I said, "Are you Kidding, till they haul me in a box to the cemetery! And even then, I may not stop!" That is my battle cry for 2013. At the sale I found a Marque replica, 24 inch, well made, and a lovely french replica, both wearing lavender silk and lace dresses and poitned french shoes on ball-jointed bodies, dressed in Golden Age stypes. I found a Chinba Poblana paointed, jointed cloth doll, similar to dolls from costa rica, and a Topsy Turvy girl from The Dominican Republic. There was a doll sized yuellow dperssion glass pitcher, and a ragtgedy andy made of rocks, a German beeswax angel, famious, and the manufacturer is escaping me now. These were very reasponaby priced, none more than 30.00 and some less than 10. I was selective, but there were some more collectible foreign dolls, all presented by my friend DT, the most honest person and antiques dealer, and a gentleman to boot. This was the first Xmas I did not get a doll, or for that matter, presents. I am not disgruntled; there are many good reasons for involving bills, many, many bills, surprise blizzards, surprise snow blowers, surprise car reparis, sands in the hour class dribbling too fast, relatives, inlaws, [good in laws], grades and finals week, etc. So, I am buying dolls and going to after Xmas sales when I can. Have done well with vintage Hallmark and Carlton, and Alexanders at discount stores. Found some beauties at Goodwill, and was able to dress and repair some of my dolls that have been waiting and languishing. I am constantly organizing and arranging The Museum, till we can find our permanent dream home. Here are some photos form Cinciniatti, all Ushabit, Cyclaid Idols, some African, expecially a bees was headed doll from the Sudan, the type my friend Mary Hillier researched and pictured in Dolls and Doll Makers. I've always marveled the wax dolls were made in such a hot climate. There will be more research on these dolls later, but for now, enjoy the long promised photos:
Tuesday, December 25, 2012
An Apologia for Countess Erzebet Bathory: Merry Christmas: Please read below, and note that Erzebet's legal problems began at the end of the Christmas Season as celebrated in her time. Merry Christm...
Thursday, December 13, 2012
I first heard this on the morning news. It is interesting that the gang has chosen the name of a doll. They are also called "New York's Deadly Dolls." Since The Museum is interested in all aspects of how dolls fit into culture, especially American Culture, I had to note this piece. Dolls seem to infiltrate every aspect of human and activity. The darker aspects of humanity also include their doll references, as we have seen in past posts and studies for this and my other blogs. Just last week, Criminal Minds featured a mad puppeteer who was murdering people and creating marionettes from their bodies. We are back to Eva Simms essay"Uncanny Dolls" and her study of Freud and Rilke and the image of the doll and figure in their writings. My own "Dolls in Horror Movies" addressed the "deadness" of dolls, and discussed how a human body is disguised in the dolls that populate Clauda's bed in a scene from Interview with the Vampire. There was also a body displayed in a doll box in Medium. An odd but timely post for the season. I hope to blog more on current and popular dolls and toys. I always keep a Toys R Us ad because it features the latest and most popular examples. Target and other Big Box stores do the same, and the ad booklets are colorful, neat little time capsules of what was popular, just old Sears, JCP, Wards, and Marshall Fields catalogs are. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, and Seasons Greetings and Happy Holidays to all. May you find the doll of your dreams--and peace--in 2013. The Miami Herald: Posted on Thu, Dec. 13, 2012 NYC police: 'Bad Barbies' gang terrorized streets The Associated Press New York City authorities say they have taken down a violent street gang whose female factions went by names including "Bad Barbies." Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Wednesday that at its height, the Trinitarios gang had up to 100 female members. He said one was a 24-year-old involved in the fatal retaliatory shooting and in the shooting of a robbery victim outside a Mexican restaurant. An investigation of the gang has resulted in arrests of 119 people in the Bronx and Manhattan since 2009. Kelly and U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara (buh-AHR'-uh) announced the latest arrests on Wednesday at a news conference. Bharara said the gang would turn the streets in a "shooting gallery" if anyone infringed on its drug dealing or gun running.
Sunday, December 9, 2012
Cross Collectibles Christmas is upon us again. The lights burn brightly everywhere, and there are decorations in every store. Ornaments of all types are in nearly all places of business. Collectors have field day this time of year. Along with Halloween, Christmas is the most celebrated and decorated of holidays, and there are serious collectors of its memorabilia. There are clubs and societies, like the Hallmark Ornament Collectors and The Golden Glow of Christmas Past, and Museums including the Christmas Museum. Year long retailers like S. Claus abound, and there are Jim Shore, Hallmark, Coca Cola ornaments, you name it. I’d like to blog about dolls and related cross collectibles. Crossover or cross collectibles can make an item more valuable than if it were collected by just one type of collector. I’d like to focus on a few categories, just to give everyone ideas. For the sake of being seasonal, let’s begin with Christmas ornaments. Collectors of Disney themed dolls and toys will find licensed Disney ornaments by Hallmark and other companies, including Disney itself. Jim Shore, himself a collected artists, makes Mickey and other Disney characters as figurines and ornaments. Snow babies made figurines featuring Disney characters as well. Target and Walgreen’s feature Disney Themed decorations and ornaments, and Sears and K-Mart also have in the past. There are also Harley Davidson ornaments, and ornaments representing rock stars. Walgreen’s carries a Gene Simmons ornament which dwells in our house. Barbie themed ornaments are made by many companies, and the most collectible are by Hallmark. In fact, Hallmark features Lionel ornaments, Star Trek and Star Wars, Nascar, Beatles, Madame Alexander, Peanuts, Harry Potter, Nightmare Before Christmas, Hot Wheels, and many more popular culture inspired ornaments in several sizes, some with light and motion features. All of these fit the description of a crossover collectible. Those who feature these themes in their collections will want the ornaments, too. Peanuts is an entire category of its own. Peanut character dolls and stuffed animals fit any type of Peanuts collection. Items can include clothing, jewelry, other figurines, books, videos, comic strips and original drawings, china, coloring books, etc. Madame Alexander has made some lovely Peanuts characters and Avon made bottles for kids and other cosmetics products featuring the characters in the sixties. I have two Skediddle Kiddles by Mattel that represent Lucy and Linus, and there were also Charlie Brown examples. Coca Cola collectors love the various dolls representing the Coca Cola ladies on the tray. These have been made as Barbies by Mattel and by Madame Alexander. There is also the Coca Cola Santa, and I have examples if miniature bottles and Coke Santa cutouts. The Coke cards attract the cola collectors but also those who collect playing cards exclusively. There are the Coke beanies of the 90s, and the various types of polar bears. Some of these also find themselves in Advertising collections and in Teddy Bear collections. Pepsi. Ditto with Coca Cola, and there are also 7-Up characters and collectibles. I have a large snowman dressed as a jester that advertises 7-Up. John Deere: This is hot stuff in the Midwest. There are also John Deere toys, which also fit farm toy categories, John Deere Barbie, Fisher Price John Deere figures, the vintage classic Johnny Tractor, board games, clothing, jewelry, etc. There are pieces of John Deere history that belonged to the family and ephemera of many types. Rock n’ Roll: There are whole series involving items that belonged to rock stars, from Michael Jackson’s glove, to John Lennon’s doodles and sketches. The Hard Rock Café features many of these as decorations, including musical instruments, like Jimmy Hendrix’s guitar. It also sells teddy bears, and there are those who collect nothing but HRC memorabilia. There are also dolls and action figures going back to the early days of Rock of the artists themselves. There are many Beatles figures, including sets of Bobbleheads, a category all its own, but which includes dolls. Shirley Temple herself is often collected. Doll collectors love these items as well, and besides the many dolls, collect books, videos, clothing, clippings about Temple and her life, blue glass with Shirley’s image, figurines, etc. Some will also collect the original books that influenced her movies, like Poor Little Rich Girl, Heidi and A Little Princess. I have a sweater with an Inuit girl on it that I will always keep; I had it on when I waited in line for Ms. Temple to sign her autobiography for me. She admired the sweater. I also have photographs of her doll collection when it was on display at Stanford’s Children’s Hospital. There is a film called Shirley Mania that talks about the Shirley Phenomena, and the Chili Victorian Museum and Doll Hospital has a huge Shirley collection. Read about it in back issues of Doll Castle News. Similarly, Kewpies, Raggedy Ann, Sesame Street and the Muppets, Hollie Hobbie, Betsey Clark, and Strawberry Shortcake are other dolls that have inspired many other products and collectibles that cross over. Celebrity dolls of all types are popular in collections of other objects, too. I have read about Elvis collectors, Marilyn Monroe collectors, Elizabeth Taylor collectors, even Charley’s Angel collectors, and there are dolls that represent all of them. There are many more celebrity dolls than have even been made before. With every film and cartoon, there are dolls and figures that represent the characters, everything from Lord of the Rings to Indiana Jones. Mythical figures like angels and mermaids have dolls made in their image, as well as clothing, lawn ornaments, jewelry, bottles, advertising products, etc. I have the Chicken of the Sea mermaid doll, and many angels from all over the world in many forms in my collection. One of my sub collections is towels and linens that feature items like this that I enjoy collecting. Unicorns and teddy bears inspire similar objects. Two collections that involve crossover objects that I love to search our are my Pocahontas and Alice in Wonderland collections. I have dolls, videos, books, drawings, ads, candies, purses, clocks, Halloween Costumes, Disney objects, jewelry, teapots and cups, plates, toy dishes, and all sorts of other objects. I have an engraved portrait of the real Pocahontas and Steven Tyler is an avid Alice collector as well. Since I’ve taught Alice, I have lots of teaching materials about her. When I took my prelims for my doctorate in English, I took them in my advisors office. He left his statue of The White Rabbit there to greet me. Also, to add to the crossover effect, Grace Slick, of Jefferson Airplane, who sang “Go Ask Alice” based on the book, is an avid doll collector herself. These are just a few of the categories of popular crossover collectibles. It would be possible to write a multivolume set on the topic. I haven’t even touched doll lamps and doll bottles, doll shoes, paper dolls and paper toys, doll quilts, paper dolls of characters and those based on real dolls. These are what make collecting fun. Merry Christmas and may your collecting dreams come true this year!
Friday, December 7, 2012
Like many doll collectors, I have branched out to human-like objects and toys for some time. I love my robots; I had early Robbis and other Japanese robots and mechanical toys that belonged to my Uncle George. His son got many of them when he was born, and then they went off to the yard sale. I've replaced the one's I had, but also have many newer models, shared with my 14 year-old, but destined for The Museum all the same. Robosapien, Roboraptor, and Robopet are among are favorites. I can't help but think of all the great movie robots I've known and loved, including Robbie, R2Dt, Lost in Space, Rhoda the Robot Girl, the automaton in Hugo, etc. Below is something the Museum of Childhood is currently doing with robots and action figures. This is a site well-worth visiting, along with The national Museum of Play. I also have many listings of robot/automaton related sources in my books, With Love from Tin Lizzie: A History of Metal Dolls and Mechanical Dolls and A Bibliography of Doll and Toy Sources. Robosapien Robosapien burst onto the toy market just in time for Christmas 2004 and was crowned UK Toy of the Year that year, selling over two million in the UK alone. Robosapien is the first robot to be made using the science of applied biomorphic robotics - 'a fusion of technology and personality'. The robot was designed by NASA scientist, Mark Tilden who started working with robots in the 1980s. Robosapien moves by remote control. You can program Robosapien to move in all kinds of ways - he walks, strikes, throws, grabs and holds objects, dances and even speaks fluent 'caveman'. He will respond to a total of 67 commands including ones to belch and fart. In 2005 the one metre tall Robosapien V2 was launched. The V2 model is even more advanced than the original Robosapien and is able see colours, identify skin tones and hear and respond to noises. The same series of toys includes a Roboraptor, a Roboreptile and Robopet.
For those who can visit the Museum of Childhood: A Treasured Collection 22 December 2012 – 1 September 2013 Museums collect, cherish and display objects of cultural, historical and artistic significance. On a smaller scale, many of us also collect, creating our own personal assemblage of significant objects, memories and keepsakes, which preserve our past and inform our future. What we consider valuable can be highly individual and varied from the truely mundane to the extremely precious. The things we keep reveal much about what we consider 'the important stuff' in life. Objects can provide a way of holding on to an intangible memory. A Treasured Collection is an exbuerant and eclectic installation of 'mini museums' made with adults and children. Their personal 'enshrined' stories provide an insight into the private art of collecting. The exhibition also features an installation by Jasleen Kaur who creates objects that travers cultural boundaries and subvert tradtional notions of use and a 'sound collection' by beat boxer Jason Singh.
Thursday, December 6, 2012
There are Dolls of Erzebet, and there is one in the Film:An Apologia for Countess Erzebet Bathory: Bathory 2008, Rime of the Ancient Mariner and Long...
An Apologia for Countess Erzebet Bathory: Bathory 2008, Rime of the Ancient Mariner and Long...: On this first of December, anniversary of my grandmother Ellen’s death 11 years ago, [she was 98, only admitted to 94, died suddenly after a...