I recently hosted a doll making class in my studio for six members of The National League of American Pen Women, www.nlapw.org. One of the those attending was Linda Davis, Minneapolis, MN, and she brought her doll Diosa de los Cinco Sentidos. This doll is the second of Linda's doll creations. Once I saw her I knew I needed to know the doll's story. Here is Linda's description.
The body of the doll was purposely divided into three different patterns of black and white. It represents neither black nor white but a blending. The two-color palette and the three-pattern change represent a shift in our way of thinking. Her hair is a mixture of colorful yarns, string, lace, whatever I had collected. It represents the wildness and abandon that is possible when we leave race behind. It also demonstrates texture.
The facial features were intentionally left off. My goal was for the viewers to put their face onto the doll, to examine what it means personally. Her body breaks the myth of the skinny perfect body syndrome. I used wire and paper clay to develop her arms/hands. The red beads (i.e., her shoes) represent Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz — to remind us that we always have the power within us. Around her neck she is adorned with beads and a medicine pouch that represents healing. Off her arm is her very own lyrica, the instrument that plays a sweet seductive melody. A basket of flowers and freshly baked loaf of bread lay nearby.
The number one question that people ask me about my dolls is, "Where did you get that face?" My dolls have threads of emotions running through them and so it makes sense to me that the face is expressing a feeling, as well as the body posture, even the colors that I use to decorate and costume her.
I did some research about dolls with no faces.
Most Amish rag dolls do not have faces and a few reasons why.
There was several more dolls mentioned in my research: Waldorf Dolls, Dominican Republic faceless dolls and Islamic dolls. There's not much about these dolls and if you are interested I am sure you would find the same website I did. It Seem to me that the dolls without faces, either found in the past or present, have a specific purpose, to be used as a plaything and model that helps the adults to socialize and shape the children into the beliefs and behaviors of specific culture.
Linda's doll invites you to put your face onto the doll and then to examine what it means for you.
I would love to hear what this doll might mean for you.
Find out more about Linda Davis here