Doll Museum - Commedia Dell'arte
We got to a group of characters from the Commedia dell'arte. Commedia dell'arte is a genre in in theater that blossomed in Italy during the 16th century. There are plenty of plays in that genre: The Servant of two Masters, The Miser and Tartuffe...
Our presentation talks about a pair of young lovers, clowns, Harlequin and Colombina, and the elderly people that are hindering them from realizing their love. Among the elders is Pantalone. Pantalone in Italian means pants, and he is a rich merchant, cunning and miser.
Next to him sits El Dottore. El Dottore is an educated doctor, a scholar, but he doesn't really have an idea what he is talking about, and even worse, he doesn't have an idea what he's doing. Would you go to a doctor like that?
Lorenzo, the King's Jester, the Fool, is the only one who can criticize the king, because if someone else would do it - he or she would be beheaded in the town square.
Melancholy, the tormented clown character,is like an artist who fully commits to his work. Taratella is the victim, he enters in somersaults and laughs at everyone.
These characters are 25 years old, among my first works. At the time I wanted to be like Geppetto, who invented a doll that actually stood up and walked. I have not yet succeeded, but I went to an eye doctor who makes artificial eyes for people and he made some for me by special order eyes with anatomic lens for my dolls. If you stand here, and look into Dottore's eyes, walk around 180 degrees, you will see that he follows you.
You know, an interesting thing happened to me two months ago. There was an international conference of ophthalmologists at the Dead Sea, they came up by bus to the museum. I took them around, and after the tour, a women professor called me aside and told me: "Miri, you know, your Dottore, he both squints and has glaucoma." I told her "Oh, dear, do not get me into expenses now." Then I explained to her that our face doesn't have symmetry in any double organ, and just that small variation we all have, at the corner of our eye or mouth, that's what makes us human. She said "you're right".
Here are 3 more Commedia dell'arte characters. Look at the delicate face of Robin vs. Gabriel's rough face. Gabriel is made of toilet paper, mixed with glue. When you mix toilet paper with glue it becomes smaller with texture like a human face, With dents, pores, bumps, tiny folds. Just take a look only at his arm, see each vein, each artery, see his tiny folds, his fingers, his bones, nails. Even their feet. This is Goldoni, who wrote all the stories of the Commedia dell'arte. They can move in any possible position.
This is the fool, from the Commedia dell'arte, and next to him sits the king's spiritual adviser. If you look at the red parts of the eyes you will see he scans you. He is a very wise man, when he looks at someone he can read his or her mind like an open book. Also the spiritual adviser is sitting next to him.