Ms. #467 proves that good things do come in small packages, or, in her case, on small packages. All original from her mohair wig to the cloth-covered box that serves as her base, this beautiful bisque belle by Galluba and Hofmann is 4.5 inches tall (the box is an additional 1.5 inches tall). She stands against a supporting pedestal incised “407 E” and the box is stamped “Germany” underneath.
As the Victorian era passed into the Edwardian and Roaring Twenties, a market developed for bisque and china bawdy novelties and figurines of women in revealing outfits. Although now most of these figurines seem more coy and cute than ribald and risque, in their time they symbolized the casting off of the perceived restraints of the Victorian era.
These little lovelies included bathing beauties, who came clad in swimsuits of real lace or in stylish painted beach wear, as well as mermaids, harem ladies, and nudies, who were meant to wear nothing more than an engaging smile. Also produced were flippers, innocent appearing figurines who reveal a bawdy secret when flipped over, and squirters, figurines that were meant to squirt water out of an appropriate orifice.
Most were manufactured in Germany from the late 1800s through the 1930s, often showing remarkable artistry and imagination, with Japan entering the market during World War I.
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Ms. #466 strikes a coy pose as she prepares for a session of skinnydipping. At one point this 7 inch tall bisque bathing beauty wore a swimsuit of silk net and ribbon, but she discarded it somewhere in the past. She wisely kept her original brown mohair wig and, frankly, with a body like that, who needs a bathing suit?! By Galluba and Hofmann, she is incised with blurred 400 number, followed by a letter.
Wednesday, March 14, 2012
Agile Ms. #464 may be one of the rarest poses for a single bathing beauty created by Galluba and Hofmann. Not only did this figurine take great skill to mold and assemble, there are so many possible breakage points, from her extended slender arms to her delicate ankles, it is a wonder she survived intact. Of excellent bisque, she is 7.5 inches tall and is incised underneath “405 R.R.” She has been rewigged and redressed in silk ribbon and antique lace.
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
I doubt any of us would look as calm and collected as Ms. 463 if we had a kitten clawing its way up our leg, but I guess that is the advantage of being bisque instead of flesh. And what beautiful bisque it is! By the firm of Galluba and Hofmann, this 5.25 inch long bathing beauty is actually one of the company's more common poses, but the addition of the kitten makes her exceptionally collectible. The kitten was molded separately and therefore could be applied to any of Galluba's standard bathing belles. Other possible applied pets include a larger cat, a spaniel pup, and a French bulldog.