Art Muse doll by Marina Elphick. Art doll inspired by muses, individually hand made by UK artist Marina Elphick.


Muse n. The source of an artist’s inspiration. In Greek and Roman mythology nine sister goddesses, the daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne were muses who presided over the arts and sciences.

Muse v.  To think or meditate on a subject thoroughly and thoughtfully. Ponder, contemplate, ruminate.

I am a UK artist and have worked professionally as an illustrator and fine artist. Batik has been my chosen medium for over thirty years, but I am regularly inspired by other mediums and art forms.

Working in three dimensions is an exciting and challenging new way to explore the themes I love.  Artists muses are a satisfying way to combine my love of art, portraiture, pattern, symbolism and textiles.

Each muse is an intricately detailed artwork, a collectible, not a toy.

The ideas, life stories of each muse will be recorded in detail on my blog, which I hope you’ll find interesting and will follow.

The idea
Looking at paintings I am often drawn to the female subjects, the muses or models who imbue the artwork with their persona, and I wonder at how important they are in expressing the ideas of the painter; or is the artist imposing his story and ‘modelling’ her in his colours, his ideas? I think the relationship probably works in two ways, the model inspires the artist and becomes his muse: and she is then portrayed in ways that tell his or her story.
This can be seen especially in the works of Rossetti of the Pre-Raphaelites, also Burne- Jones, Botticelli, Modigliani, Mucha and Klimt as well as many others.

The beginning

Doll making has been an interest of mine since childhood, when at seven years old I was given my first Singer sewing machine.
At the time my mum was teaching fashion at St Martins School of Art and I was given off -cuts and scraps of fabric, always in dazzling colours and modern prints. I delighted in creating all types of dolls, clowns, and animals with my continuous supply of cottons, felts and slinky fabrics. As a teenager I was making rag dolls to commission, alongside drawing portraits, enabling me to earn my own money.
After my degree at Goldsmiths I worked as an illustrator, choosing batik as my medium. My enjoyment of fabrics continued in dressmaking and soft sculpture and is now finding a new direction in my art muses.

Combining my interest in art with my love of doll construction and dress making seems a natural progression. The process of studying artists and their work is really enjoyable research and allows me the pleasure of examining some of my favourite painters and their paintings in detail.

Fanny Eaton, Chagall Bride, Effie Gray, Emilie Floge, Primavera and Jane Morris, muses by Marina. Muse dolls by Marina Elphick of Marina's Muses.
Muses to come,  Fanny Eaton, Chagall Bride, Effie Gray, Emilie Floge, Primavera and Jane Morris, muse dolls by Marina Elphick.