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D & K (Dressel & Kister) Porcelain Bathing Beauty - Circa 1911
This delightful nude is of wonderful quality & in outstanding condition. She has a lovely proportioned slender body with graceful curves. Her skin tone is comprised of a very soft tinted pink with just a hint of a darker coloration at places like elbows, underarms, knees & hands. Her serene face is done with one stroke black brows, brown eyes with black pupils & black outlines. Her nostrils, lid lines & checks are done with a light coral blush color & her rosebud lips are a deeper coral. Her hair is done in shades of gray with well done line definition depicting flow & curls in her hair style. Her feet have been painted with a lovely shade of periwinkle blue ballet slippers.
Her porcelain is in excellent condition with no flakes, chips, cracks, crazing, missing pieces or repairs. I could only find two things, both of which I feel are original to manufacture. The bottom of her right foot has an abrasion to the glaze. I feel there may have been a bubble after firing & the work master sanded it down. Also her left elbow area has some fine lined tiny spots of gray that are probably an oops from the brush while doing her hair. Porcelain bathing beauties cast as a full and complete figure are much more desirable as well as more costly due to the complex nature of their manufacture. They required more involved molds as well as multiple molds for some body parts like feet, arms, hands & even fingers that were then attached to the figure & fired for a final doll body. Rarity of the pose must also be taken into account.
A lot of the bathing beauties did not have marks. The current reasoning to this is the work masters did not consider them to be an important enough object to mark. Also some countries, like the USA, accepted attached paper or foil labels which at this point are long gone. Our beauty is marked on her butt with the D & K bishops staff or scepter mark - I've seen it called both. There is also a "B" which we are assuming is the artist mark. Per author Sharon Hope Weintraub, who kindly answered a few questions for me, our D & K beauty is pictured in a 1911 D & K catalog on a wood base. She is also pictured in Ms. Weintraub's 2nd. book "Bawdy Bisques and Naughty Novelties: German Bathing Beauties and Their Risqué Kin". D & K dolls are considered the finest and most collectable ever made.
Our bathing beauty is very difficult to measure due to her fixed body position. But with her butt flat on my desk she measures in a straight line approx. 7 3/4' long from the tip of her toe to the point of her left elbow (highest point in this position). Her widest point is thru her elbows being 3 1/2" wide. A lovely doll in a rare action pose in superb condition for your collection.
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