Dolls and dollhouses have always held a special place in my heart. Not only did I have the typical play-with-dolls girlhood, the child therapist I went to used dolls and dollhouses helped me work through some very intense feelings while my parents underwent their divorce. I still use dolls and characters as a a creative outlet to work through emotional issues or problem solve in my paintings.
I played with dolls well into my teen years. I hide them in a trunk under my bed, a private collection of friends. I made clothes, accessories and furniture for them, but they nevery really had a home.
I have dreamt of working on a dollhouse for years. When I tell people this dream they respond with, “So why don’t you make one?” Perhaps it seems like an easily resolved issue, but without children of my own, and since I have been trying to make a serious go of my painting career, I do not allow myself time for frivolous projects. I could not justify to myself a good enough reason to play house until earlier this year when I received news that my sister would be giving birth to a baby girl this fall.
Now I felt I had a reason to follow my heart and in the end create a family heirloom that would be passed on to my niece.
I am not giving myself a deadline for this project, and I am not declaring a time in which my little loved one will take ownership of this project. It may be upon my death, but until then, I plan to create an art house.
This mini-domicile will combine my love of art, fashion/home decor, the Surreal, and family.
I began the search for the house structure immediately after talking to my sister about her ultrasound results. I had found various traditional Victorian and Suburban structures, but on April 27, 2012, I picked up a Lundby Gothenburg dollhouse, circa mid 1970s, from a local collector/rehabber. She also threw in a table, corner chair and a side table for the $15 price.
I loved the simple design, and unlike most dollhouses, it did not have a front facade. This made it perfect for the future painted surface. At this point I am envisioning a wooded, outdoor scene. The hole at the bottom is designed to house the electrical components, but I am probably going to disable that feature and create a cave for some little creature instead.
This digital journal will document my journey through this project, the creation of the furniture, the inhabitants and the structure itself. First step, raise the roof!