"Old Doill's Charm"
16 December 2016
Press Office of the Amber Museum
From 16 December to 22 January, Kaliningrad Amber Museum will show the exhibition "Old Doll's Charm".
The exposition is based on antique toys made in Germany in the late 19th – early 20th century. Back at the time, there were several enterprises participating in creation of one doll: its head was made of porcelain at one, its body – made of leather and textile at another, as well as the clothes. To finish a doll's image as its author designed it, various accessories were necessary – adornments, furniture, music instruments, flowers, miniature books, which were made at separate workshops.
However the most expressive part of a future doll was her head, that is why the creators spent much trouble on producing a touching, pretty and beautiful face.
Biscuit porcelain is a perfect material for such purposes, as its plastic qualities allow to show different shades of facial expression, mood and character of the future doll. After the firing, porcelain was painted to create an effect of "lively face" conveying identity, delicate skin and texture of human skin. Special attention was given to the doll's hair style – naturalness and fashionableness were essential conditions for creation of an attractive image .
First factory-made dolls almost always embodied young girls, only some time later dolls-children appeared. At the same time with the rising popularity of goods from exotic countries, dolls with appearance and costume national features were produced.
In the late 19th – early 20th century, despite the industrial boom, only people of substance could afford to buy a doll with a porcelain head. "Precious beauties" were kept in special chests or doll houses. Only with growth of chemical industry in the 20th century, dolls were made from synthetic substances, mostly they became an ordinary children's toy. Only small companies and independent masters go on to create dolls using old technologies and hand work.
Modern and old dolls attract attention of more than children. Psychological and esthetic potential of these toys influences the imagination, arouses creativeness, attracts collectors, psychs, fashion and interior designers.