Mari Shimizu’s dolls contain worlds. The Japanese artist crafts surreal, disconcerting figures whose torsos are often hollowed and reveal views into scenes ripped from mythology. The work is both a new transformation for the classical doll and a nod to the centuries-old nature of the toys.
“Working with traditional Japanese materials such as animal hair and organic silk, along with century-old, handmade components, Shimizu has created a super-realistic ball-joint doll collection,” a statement says. “Her work, she says, offers a glimpse into the very souls of these antique objects. The blend of antique and traditional materials, with references to Japanese historical figures, makes this exhibition compelling viewing.”
The artist has exhibited her figures across the world, from her native Japan to Los Angeles. See more of Shimizu’s dolls below.