The connection between dolls and magic is a bit blurry. Traditional dolls were sometimes used as children's playthings, but they may also have had spiritual, magical and ritual value. There is no real defined line between spiritual dolls and toys.
In some cultures, dolls that had been used in rituals were given to children. They were also used in children's education and as carriers of cultural heritage. In other cultures dolls were considered too laden with magical powers to allow children to play with them.
My own first "spirit dolls" were rolled up scraps of fabric from my mother's sewing basket. I would tie yarn around the middle and play with them as if they were real people - this was long before Barbie dolls!
Figures and faces still play a major role in my artwork. Here are some pieces done in the last year or so that were inspired by the early Spirit Doll workshops that I taught over a decade ago.
Lyn Belisle, For Love of Leonardo, 2019
Lyn Belisle, Unearthed, 2019
I hope you find some doll magic for yourself in this workshop. As always, I present the ideas to you in hopes that you will take them and make them your own.
Please watch the introductory video - and have fun!