Effigy” explores the concept of original beauty through the various layers of what it means to be human; mind, body and soul. The metaphor of Babushka nesting dolls relates to relationships, of layers and of peeling or stripping away the surface to reveal inner depth. The form of the dolls is similar to that of the original effigies; the rounded, female earth mother.

The oldest cultural form of the celebration of beauty within both the human form and the divine is effigy. In many ancient cultures, effigies were made as a form of worship of those human characteristics people most valued within their cultures. Early effigies were concerned with a form of organic female beauty, with heavily exaggerated features symbolic of nurture, fertility and comfort.

Each of the nesting dolls represents, in descending order, the beauty within a different aspect of self.

  1. Body – the outer layer that we publicly present to the world.
  2. Ego – the layers of words we wrap ourselves in as we filter both what comes in and what we allow to come out.
  3. Mind – the quiet, thoughtful centre of our logic and reason.
  4. Heart – vulnerable and delicate, full of wild passions and emotions.
  5. Soul – still, centred and peaceful.
  6. Essence – the pure, innocent and untouched core of our being.

Exhibited as part of Digital Salon’s online group exhibition “Original Beauty“, 2011. The Venus of Willendorf drawn directly onto the doll using white gesso and charcoal.


All artworks are self-funded and created on a shoestring budget