Sunday 7 October 2012

The Dolls of St Ulrich's (Ortisei) Museum in the Val Gherdëina and Eric Horne

It is just a little bit confusing, since placee in the Alto Adige (Sud Tirol) can have sometimes three different names - Italian, Austrian and Ladin (the local dialect). Many of this names pose no real problem since it is easy to see one in the other - however, St Ulrich is also called Ortisei which is not so self evident - though it is great fun to test yourself at the beginning and end of the holiday to see how expertly trilingual you have become! If you would like to witness some Romansch-like Ladin for yourself click here for the museum website and in the top right hand corner choose LAD.

The entire valley is famous for its wood-carving, so it is no wonder there are all manner of early carved dolls in the museum. This family of 23 jointed dolls is spectacular - you need good glasses to see the tiniest at all.

Some dolls look more for display - like these two very fashionable young ladies.

Others are simply delightfully and utterly crazy - like these madcaps which can be spun like tops on their heads!

The doll above is a whirligig - turn her quickly in your palms and her arms fly out. I also saw a married couple in this style who slapped each other's faces!
You will need two hours to enjoy all the dolls and toys. Eric Horne in the UK makes similar precision carved dolls - I have a 5" doll of his perched on my desk, she is a wonder of craftmanship - see below - click here to see Eric's website and his dolls.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks! I'm actually going to be in Bolzano in a few weeks, maybe I can get to this museum.