The Chosen Ones
The question I get asked a lot is whether it’s difficult for me to part with my dolls when I sell them. The answer is no. It’s not hard at all, because selling them is necessary for me to be able to continue making more art. It’s a very simple and easy decision driven by economics. Also, I’m not interested in collecting my own work – I play with dolls by designing and making them.
And yet, I do keep a few special dolls, in my personal collection. Mostly it’s for the purpose of short notice traveling exhibitions, but also because I consider them to be important milestones in my creative process and useful tools for development, experimentation and refinement of my techniques.
Usually most of these Travel Exhibition dolls are away in storage, but there are a few Chosen Ones that get the honour of being displayed in various locations in my home. My Chosen Ones usually earn their keep by being my working models. I work with them while designing and costuming. I observe their mechanics overtime and make notes on any needed improvements to my future work. So in essence, the Chosen Ones are my control group for all Enchanted Doll.
I like to slowly rotate my Chosen group by selling off one of my favourites once every couple of years. I choose a doll which I feel has fulfilled me completely and which can’t teach me anything else about my craft. Our game together comes to an end and I let her go to fulfill somebody else with her presence. That is the job of a doll – to bring us existential comfort by acting as a projection and a reflection of ourselves, made in our own image.
Doing this culling’ helps me innovate, practice discipline, and stay hungry for new work. I often play a game with myself, a sort of mental exercise where I try to decide which one of my Chosen dolls I would save from a fire if I could only save one. After years of trying, I haven’t been able to decide yet. Perhaps I’d let them all perish, and then start over.
Which one of these would you save?
This entry was posted on Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016 at 6:04 pm
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