This thesis addresses three archetypes of feminity: the maiden, the mother, and the temptress as their constructs occur in our western society, and how I have interpreted them in the form of dolls. These three archetypes demonstrate their power and presence through the clothes and costumes worn by women throughout history and into contemporary times. Adornment and clothing have an incredible power to disguise and to influence the ways a woman can be interpreted- who she appears to be. This lends great possibility to the characters one can create of oneself, and the sense of hybridization that can encompass the female form. A woman can become a dress up doll- taking on a new character or archetype with the ease of changing her garments.
I examine the character construct of the femme fatale as an iteration of the temptress archetype, and as a possible synthesis of all three. The dark aesthetic of the femme fatal pervades my work and is encompassed by my personal aesthetic.
I have used the art of doll making to express this power inherent in clothing and exaggerated ornamentation. The three dolls I have created em-body each of these three archetypes with characteristics demonstrated through highly detailed costuming strategies. I address a sense of hybridity within each doll form by altering anatomy and incorporating taxidermy and other animal materials.