And now for something completely different:  Of Dolls and Murder

There was a time long before CSI, when investigators used artist’s miniature recreation of crime scenes as a key component of homicide investigations into unexplained deaths. Sixty-something grandmother, Frances Glessner Lee, was the first to create the dollhouse homicide scenes, called Nutshells, back in the 1930s.

The documentary film, Of Dolls and Murder, explores the Nutshells and the woman who created them. According to the website, Lee’s Nutshells are still used today to train detectives, serving as a reminder to alway look for the smallest of clues when investigating. Here’s an interesting PBS video documenting the documentary.

I’m not asking if you think dollhouse-making is fine art, or even art at all. And I had no intention of analyzing dollhouses or what they represent artistically (although feel free to comment on the topic if you wish!). I just wanted to share because I think the things are eerily cool!

That said, I do wonder why these miniature versions are more disturbing to me than the real crime scenes they represent. Maybe it’s because we’ve been conditioned to experience dolls and dollhouses through eyes of innocence, and these examples destroy that notion with the same violence they portray? Reality really is more frightening than fantasy.

Of Dolls and Murder shows that anything we make, whether fine art or casual hobby, can have a life of its own, even generations later. Our creations speak for themselves after we give them life and put them out there, regardless of original intentions. Like we keep saying, let’s just make stuff and see what happens.

Now that we’ve discussed something completely different today, hopefully, next Friday’s Thing of the Week will be… something completely different!