Artist embraces her baby-faced hobby
Tokoroa woman Anne Buckley has taken her art to the next level by creating ultra-realistic dolls.
Buckley said she makes the ‘‘reborn dolls’’ because it was a way to improve her art skills but many other people made them to sell.
Over the past three years Buckley said she has made 29 reborn dolls, some which are the same starter kit.
‘‘There are millions around and every single one of them, despite being the exact same kit, look totally different.’’
She said that is what makes a reborn doll different from any other factory made doll.
She said ‘‘A lot of artists I know do custom work,’’ which Buckley said is too stressful.
She said there are many reasons why people have these dolls but ’’For me it’s an art, it’s a hobby,’’ she said.
They are adult dolls and not for kids, however some artists make them child friendly.
‘‘Some people literally treat them like babies, you know: dress them, undress them, put them in pyjamas, pretend to feed them with a bottle that doesn’t actually feed.’’
Although Buckley said constant contact with the doll will make the paint wear off, as they are ‘‘a collectable doll and an art doll.’’
However, Buckley donated one of her dolls to the Victoria dementia unit in Tokoroa, where the residents treat it like a real baby.
‘‘The elderly and dementia patients in particular think they are real and they get a lot of comfort from them.’’
She said other people just collect them and have rooms full of reborn dolls, and other people sell them as an artist would.
‘‘Some people have rooms full of them, ceiling to floor.’’
Buckley doesn’t usually sell her dolls but said she has no connection or bond to them as some people do. To her they are a piece of artwork.
Buckley said that she will soon be taking a break from making the reborn dolls as it is becoming too expensive as it costs roughly $200-$300 per doll to make.
She said it is also very ‘‘Time consuming’’ as it takes about two weeks of constant, hard work, seven hours a day to complete.
‘‘Every artist will give you a different time frame...but usually about a week and a half to two weeks.’’
Anne Buckley and her realistic reborn dolls