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 heArt Dolls    by    Chris

I am an artdoll artist.

My artdolls are handcrafted Spirit dolls.

They are heartfelt and soul filled messengers.

                 What is an Art Doll?

An art doll is a kind of sculpture; an art object for your home, like a painting. Like any original art, it is handmade by an artist, and is as individual as a painting.

An art doll is often referred to as "one of a kind “or OOAK.

An art doll is intended as an expressive and unique art object.

An art doll is not a child’s toy. It is delicate and needs care in handling.

Art doll artists use a wide variety of styles and media. Some are abstract or tribal, while others are realistic. Materials include polymer clay, cloth, wire and various embellishments like beads, feathers, rocks and wood.


  What are Spirit Dolls or Healing Dolls?

Spirit dolls or healing dolls are an ancient tradition. These figures have been used in ritual and for healing for thousands of years. They are used to remind and influence the owner with a specific spiritual quality.

Spirit dolls can represent spiritual qualities like peace, hope or courage. They can also be used to aid the owner through a difficult time or to celebrate a special event.

Spirit dolls can be made using found objects from the commercial and /or natural world.

Spirit dolls can be created by anyone using simple doll making techniques or by more experienced doll makers as gifts and for purchase.

             What is "heArtDoll Blessings"?

HeArtdoll Blessings is a collection of spirit artdolls that were inspired as a way of healing through a difficult time in my life.

Each artdoll was created with a particular intention to reflect a spiritual quality. They each have a blessing to enhance the experience of the quality that I invite the viewer to consider.

My artdolls are all ooak. They are made of polymer clay, paperclay, wire, cloth and embellishments. I use quilting and layering techniques to fashion the clothes the artdoll wears. Hand sewing and beading adorns many of the outfits.

I consciously co-create with Spirit to make manifest a heartfelt and soul stirring heArtDoll. My heArtDolls represent my personal yet universal experiences of life and living.

It is my deepest intention and wish that heArtDoll Blessings soothe, inspire and help others connect with that in them that is good, loving, loved and Divine.

Art in the Park

Fine Art & Crafts Show

Heckscher Park, Huntington, NY

June 1 & 2, 2013

My Story

I am an artdoll artist. My artdolls are handcrafted Spirit dolls. They are heartfelt and soul filled messengers. My present artdoll series is the outgrowth of a particular and recent challenging time in my life. A coworker, in an effort to offer encouragement to me, each day, would leave a rock with a word imprinted on it like Hope, Love, or Faith. This collection of rocks inspired me to do a whole series of artdolls. Each rock and the inspirational quality printed on it, is my focus as I create the artdoll. I let the quality speak to me and through me, as I create each piece. The dolls are created using polymer clay, paper clay, wire, stuffing, material and beads. An essential part of my artdoll and process is to write a blessing and affix it to the back of the doll.

I call my collection heArt Doll Blessings.  With each piece, I set an intention to invite Spirit into the whole process. My artdolls evolve without having a specific end sight in mind, though I do have vision for an end feeling. My intention for the end feeling is that I feel happy with my creation and that I love the process.  Throughout my process, I remind myself of my collaboration with Spirit. In that way, I am inviting Intuition, Fun and Surprise to enter.    My wish for the viewers is to invite them into a deeper relationship with the quality I have portrayed by the artdoll and blessing.

 Art has been my passion since I was a small child yet I did not pursue it in my formal education or profession.  Art took a backseat and was labeled “a hobby”. But for as long as I can remember, I have made dolls, and  puppets along with painting, drawing and sewing, In my early adulthood, my art surfaced in my own children’s Halloween costumes, decorations and the like.   When my children were older, I immersed myself in soft sculpture dolls and did well at art shows and in sales. However, I dropped this as my 4 then teenage children’s needs pressed forward and the old nagging voices pushed my passion into the background.

I made several artdolls as gifts for special people in my life but again had not fully called myself an artdoll artist. After several life-changing family events happened, I decided it was time for me to follow this inner and persistent calling of the artist. I retired from my profession as a Physical Therapist, and focus now on building my artdoll business.

My artdolls integrate all of my artistic loves as well as all of the years of touching bodies and lives as a Physical Therapist and a Rubenfeld Synergist. I love the human form and particularly the hands, so sculpting expression into the hands is a great pleasure for me.  I am not looking to make my artdolls pretty or refined.  They have a handcrafted look and this allows me to loosen the idea of making them look perfect. I am more interested in the feel of the image, the posture and the embellishments. I also love engineering how to construct each figure.

Because I have intended to be a co creator with Spirit, I am letting go of “trying” to make the doll look a certain way. Rather I am led along the way. The doll evolves, which I find more fun. My process is filled with curiosity as Spirit and I join to portray how that particular spiritual quality of the rock moves in me.

During a meditation I heard Spirit say, “Let your work be my playground.” Hmm, that was different!  In my early religious upbringing, Spirit and playground were not a pair. Yet I felt the delight in this statement. I began to question my beliefs about Spirit in my life. What would that be like to play? To let fun and enjoyment be my lead?  Was that what Spirit wanted for me? That was different!  And what if the fulfillment I received in being creative was exactly what Spirit wanted for me?  I began to feel all the possibilities in this idea and all the beliefs about hard work and suffering began to shift too. This was a much needed balm for my hardworking mentality. So it was time to play with my dolls again!  I am now re-pairing my beliefs. Creativity and Spirit? Check. Fun and profession? Check.  Art and Abundance? Check.

Creativity and Spirituality are now intricately and intimately bonded and my mind, body, emotions and spirit delight in the paradigm shift. 

Presently I am building my artdoll collection, I am following my energy and I most want to create with my hands. Each artdoll is inspiring a series of other artdolls.

One of the artdolls that holds special meaning to me is the one called “Breathe”. Both my parents died from lung disease .As their caregiver; I watched how precious even one breath was. The embellishment on Breathe’s dress is made up of my mom’s oxygen tubing that I cut up and sewed on as beads. The Blessing for Breath invites the reader into a connection with the sacredness of breath. This artdoll has generated a series of smaller artdolls that also has “breathe” as their message.

HeArt Doll Blessing has a broad future.  I have a vision of bringing the healing art of doll making to a larger community.  This has endless possibilities as I can combine my Artbundance coaching, Rubenfeld Synergy and artdoll making in classes and presentations.


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