Baby Dolls

16 Mar

I copied the following text from somewhere. Sorry, I cannot find the link to it any more. Apologies to the author.

“Baby dolls are a pretty common item to have when you’re a child, and with their plastic heads stuck on stuffed bodies, you’d thankfully never mistake one for a real baby. However, if you’re an adult and are looking for something a bit more realistic, maybe you should learn about the Reborners. PhotographerJamie Diamond did, spending time with what she describes as an “outsider art-making community.” Made up of women, these largely self-taught artists make hyperrealistic baby dolls by painting over existing dolls, collect them, and even interact with them. Sometimes the Reborners keep their dolls; other times, the dolls are put up for “adoption” on eBay. Besides a creative outlet, these dolls can also help the women manage a variety of emotional issues.”



After our Christmas party last year a neighbour had brought around her baby doll for me to hold!



I found this about the reborn subculture in google:

8 Responses to “Baby Dolls”

  1. gerard oosterman March 16, 2015 at 1:43 pm #

    I found those pictures of re-borners a bit sad and lugubrious.

    • auntyuta March 16, 2015 at 2:07 pm #

      True, Gerard, hyperrealistic baby dolls are apparently a substitute for a real baby for some women. I agree, it is kind of sad.
      These “reborner” women are largely self-taught artists. To paint over existing dolls and making these look like they are alive, shows a lot of creativity. Maybe you have to have the feelings of an artist to see them as real babies!, but maybe a variety of emotional issues play a part too.

  2. Three Well Beings March 16, 2015 at 4:16 pm #

    The dolls themselves are amazing, Uta! I’ve never heard of this sub-culture of “reborners” and I don’t know what to think of it! I read the articles in the links and looked at the women posing with the “babies and children” and I just don’t think it looks emotionally healthy. Yet, maybe it is in some way. All I can say is it is really fascinating. I’m glad you wrote about it!

  3. catterel March 16, 2015 at 9:17 pm #

    As works of art, these dolls are amazingly lifelike. But I met an intelligent young woman in her thirties some years ago, whose entire life centred around a “nursery” she had filled with “babies” – perhaps it was helping her in some way, but I found it disconcerting and very sad.

    • auntyuta March 16, 2015 at 9:30 pm #

      I think I know, what you mean, Cat, for I feel a bit the same. You’ve seen the following post where Peter’s two sisters are mentioned. They are both into collecting dolls. It looks to me that these dolls fill some kind of emotional need, even though both have children and grandchildren. Maybe they long for the time when they were young and able to look after little children? I don’t know.
      “Baby dolls are a pretty common item to have when you’re a child, and with their plastic heads stuck on stuffed bodies, you’d thankfully never mistake one for a real baby.” I think this by my unknown author says it pretty well.
      Personally I have outgrown dolls a long, long time ago, even though I too must admit that some of these dolls look amazingly lifelike and are a real work of art and beautiful to look at. 🙂

  4. rangewriter March 17, 2015 at 3:00 am #

    I knew there was a strong doll collecting community, but I didn’t know about these reborners. The thing is, today’s dolls, despite the magic of technology, just don’t have the charm of the old dolls with glass eyes and porcelain skin. I’m glad people care enough to restore them.

    • auntyuta March 17, 2015 at 8:46 am #

      Yes, Linda, I too am glad when old dolls are being restored and kept in good condition. One of Peter’s sisters has a great collection of beautiful old dolls. The other sister has two very lifelike looking dolls. She and her partner treat them as though they are real children. I find this a bit disconcerting. I mean in some plays the actors may have to treat a doll as though it was alive. Why do people do this kind of acting in their own home? Well, I don’t want to say it is wrong. Apparently they just like doing it. And why not? To each his or her own! 🙂

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