Extremely Rare Portrait Doll of "Josephine Baker", Banana Costume, Model 554

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18" (46 cm.) Firmly-stuffed light-brown felt doll, chubby swivel head with plump cheeks, wide googly side-glancing painted eyes, painted black all-around curly lashes, black brows, rounded nose with accented nostrils, closed mouth with felt applique lips, black hair in highly-stylized cut including spit curl on forehead. intricatedart-shaped torso and limbs, modeled bent elbows, jointing at shoulder and hips, separated fingers. Condition: generally excellent, little mend at one pierced ear hole. Comments: Lenci, circa 1927, model 554, the doll portrays the American-born Parisian dancer Josephine Baker in her most famous costume, "Danse Banane", from her 1925 performance at the Folies Bergere. Value Points: extremely rare Lenci model, paying homage to the famed performer known as the Bronze Venus, or, simply "La Baker", the doll is also notable for its unique construction details, the intricate darts, padding, and insets enhancing her seductive pose, wearing a felt banana costume with leaves and vine, and elaborate original brass bangle jewelry. Elena di Scavini mingled in the intellectual and art circles of 1920s Europe, with celebrated friends from throughout the continent. Some served as generic inspiration for her dolls, and others, some of whom became dear friends such as Josephine Baker, were made into splendid dolls which actually bore their names.
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