Irish artist, Orla O'Brien created this collection of magical, unique "lassies" by combining wire, wool, clay, vintage paper, pain, hair, and a variety of textiles. She hand dyed, molded, coiled, hand embroidered, distressed, and manipulated various materials to create different personality for each of her "friends." Their papier mache faces express their individuality, while the stance of their string wrapped bodies and limbs show their strength and gumption!!! In addition, each doll is accompanied by their own "passport," ..... listing their name, nationality, and date of birth .... making them ready for a quick jaunt around the world.....starting at Mint, Lina Kanafani's fantastic store in London, where they were found!!!
The dolls are inspired by the warmth and love of Orla's early childhood memories of visiting her Grandmother's house. In her home, there was a cupboard of unusual dolls, collected from around the world, each in their own boxes ..... family heirlooms kept as treasures behind glass. As a child, their magical spirit and various nationalities transported Orla to countries far away, and in her own child-like way she created stories, bringing the dolls to life. The wanderlust and stories continue for Orla, her latest batch of "beauties" are from Germany. Ireland, Spain, and Poland ....... and one lone boy from the U.K.!!!!
"In creating my own collection of dolls, I have attempted to recapture my magical childlike state of mind. From my treasured memories I have crafted tangible figures which tell the viewer a story about the written past and my present self. Each doll was designed by establishing the characters of unique and individual people involved in my world. In developing the doll characters I focused on giving each figure a personality while reinforcing an identity by creating a passport for each doll." Orla O'Brien
I am enamored by Orla's natural instinct for creating art from reclaimed "bits and pieces." The dolls are reminiscent of the simplicity of another era. Their good "vibrations" are wonderful "accessorations" for all of us!!!!!!