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Looking for a positive impact, now dolls modelled on inspiring women

"These women inspired me. I really admire the women that I featured in my mighty dolls, for what they did or achieved and continue to do," Wendy Tsao

Written by Hemani Bhandari | New Delhi |
Updated: October 16, 2015 3:56:13 pm
Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai's doll by Wendy Tsao/ Source: Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai’s doll by Wendy Tsao/ Source:

All girls have played with dolls in their developing years and this inevitably leaves an impact on the child’s mind. But these dolls are mostly made to emulate Hollywood or some what some think is the perfect notion of beauty in women. Now, Canada-based artist Wendy Tsao is creating dolls modelled on women who really inspire like activist Malala Yousafzai, author J.K Rowling and painter Frida Kahlo.

“These women inspired me. I really admire the women that I featured in my mighty dolls, for what they did or achieved and continue to do. And they should be role models instead of, or at least, alongside the products of Disney(TM) and Hollywood(TM),” she told in an email interview.

Though she admits that these women are adults who children might not relate to in an instant, “we need to show children that these remarkable women were once children too,” she adds.

Tsao’s reading about Bratz (TM) dolls and Barbie (TM) dolls which questioned the impact of these dolls on a child’s body image is what triggered her to take up this project. “I don’t know whether it has a negative impact but it made me consider the alternative or opposite. Could a child learn something positive from their dolls?” she says.

Also, Tasmanian artist Sonia Singh inspired Tsao for this creation. Singh’s Tree Change dolls gives a humble and down-to-earth look to discarded high-fashioned and make-up-dipped dolls. “I was fascinated by the transformation of the dolls, from the distinctively heavily-made up Bratz doll face to a more down-to-earth look,” she adds.

Earlier, Tsao was creating soft-toys inspired by children’s drawings; believing in the notion that toys can provide meaning, comfort and pride in a child. Her mighty dolls will be up for auction on her website within a few weeks.

Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai, 1997-, Pakistani activist, youngest Nobel Prize laureate

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J.K Rowling

J.K. Rowling, 1965-, British novelist best known for Harry Potter series

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Waris Dirie

Waris Dirie, 1965-, model, author, social activist

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Roberta Bondar

Roberta Bondar, 1945- , first female Canadian astronaut

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Jane Goodall

Jane Goodall, 1934- , British primatologist, UN Messenger of Peace

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