I do not own dolls.
The ones I kept from childhood I passed on to my daughters: a rag doll, a few odd Barbie dolls, and Fisher-Price Little People figures. Dolls are for children as far as I am concerned.
The voodoo doll. Now, that’s the exception. That is always a possibility.
I do not collect dolls. I collect pictures of dolls because I’m fascinated with how people repurpose cast-off toys. Are you familiar with the work of artist Tyree Guyton? The baby doll nailed to the side of an abandoned house on Heidelberg Street in Detroit, in an area known as the The Heidelberg Project, is an evocative image, is it not? If you are familiar with the problems of Detroit, this doll will break your heart. Even if you are not, it’s still a powerful image.
Not all doll depictions are so gut-wrenching. I have a few in rotation on Facebook that generate laughs and questions from friends and looks of resignation from my husband. He uses Facebook as part of a suite of online portfolios and networking tools. He does not always appreciate being married to a doll head with blood dripping from the eyelids.
Most of the dolls I find in my travels. The one above, Dementina of the zombie apocalypse, reclined on a mod ’60s living room display in a fairly upscale vintage furniture and fixtures store. A little unsettling but also kind of funny. Would I want that in my house? No.
I have a wooden doll head that a friend who “gets me” gave to me a year ago. I like the look of this bald, body-less wooden head. The wide, wistful eyes, raised brows and lips pursed in perpetual state of surprise make me think of Cindy Lou Who when she finds the Grinch stealing her Christmas tree. Truth? I don’t know where this head is anymore.
I could go on but you get the point.
Speaking of dolls, here are links to two other posts I wrote about dolls: