Take this kiss upon the brow
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream
(Edgar Allan Poe)
As Pantovola, I create dark and dreamy art dolls (ooak) and textile art and soft sculptures, using mainly second hand materials. I make animals and otherworldly creatures by hand with cloth, clay, discarded scraps of fabric, vintage and antique lace and secondhand haberdashery collected from thrift stores and markets. I decorate each piece with natural dyes, water colors and handmade embroidery.
I prefer to work with old materials that show wear and tear,
incorporating its own history and narrative into my work.
My work has a narrative that is rooted in a life long fascination with folklore tales and mythology, fairy tales, the occult, animals and the natural kingdom. But I also translate personal stories into my work.
I hope my art engages with people on an emotional, subconscious level,
without being too obvious, leaving room for individual interpretation.
But also adding beauty to the world, much like the old folklore stories do,
using suggestive, often archetypal symbolism and metaphors to touch on
Besides my autonomous work, I also create bespoke, personalized Heirloom Dolls and Memorial Art, taking inspiration from the Mourning Art of the Victorian Era.
I like to think of it as a weave of peoples narratives and history, telling a bigger story together.
For these particular pieces I add materials provided by the client that are of personal importance;
scraps of fabric, an old wedding glove, Gran’s jewels, old photographs and letters and so on.
Hopefully my heirloom pieces will be passed on from one generation to the next,
becoming tangible memories in and of people’s lives.
I vividly remember making my first doll when I was only a small child,
a sock filled with cotton wool on which I carefully painted a face and hair.
With some cloth and ribbon I made the ‘sock doll’ a little dress.
“Pantovola” was born in the spring of 2015.
I had graduated from art school 10 years prior and worked as a singer, performer, illustrator and print maker. After traveling around for years between jobs and tours I moved onto a canal boat in London. There I simply could not afford to create the work I used to; the living space was small and dark (however cozy it was though, painting by candle light didn’t seem to really work) and studio space was too pricey in London.
Though one evening sipping some natural wine by the little wood burner, I had a vivid memory of the child I once was, creating her own magical dream world with not much more than a sock and some cotton wool. Something magical sparked inside of me and the next day my first ‘grown up’ doll was made (not a very good one however, but a welcome beginning of something new..)
Two years have past, I moved from the south to the north and have been sewing like a maniac. Currently I work as a full time textile artist and doll maker from my home studio in Edinburgh.
Pantovola art dolls are made for collectors and for display purposes
Thank you for kindly visiting me here!