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Wright, Dare

PHOTOGRAPHS: Lonely Doll (3).


Born in Canada, Dare Wright was an actress, fashion model, and photographer best known for her ten Lonely Doll books, first published in 1957. Wright used as her models the Lenci doll she had as a child-named Edith-and two teddy bears she had purchased at F.A.O. Schwartz, utilized in the books as Mr. Bear and Little Bear. The first book made the New York Times Bestseller List, and famed doll maker Madame Alexander created her own version of the Lonely Doll in 1958.
Wright specifically paired the photographs and text in The Lonely Doll to create a haunting, almost surrealistic mood, and in 2010 The Guardian chose it as one of the 10 Best Illustrated Children's Books of all time for its "glamour, mystery and melancholy." While it was denounced recently for its depiction of Mr. Bear spanking Edith, notables such as fashion designer Vera Wang have been among its many defenders. In 2004, a biography of Wright by Jean Nathan, The Search for Dar  Wright: The Secret Life of the Lonely Doll, was published by Picador.
Wright, Dare. Checkers. 1961.
9 x 8 ¼ inches; gelatin silver print; matted and framed.
Illustration for The Lonely Doll Learns a Lesson (New York: Random House, 1961)
Wright, Dare. We'd Better Start Getting Ready for Christmas. 1966.
8 5/8 x 8 ¼ inches; gelatin silver print.
Illustration for A Gift from the Lonely Doll (New York: Random House, 1966).
Wright, Dare. Edith and Little Bear. 1971.
9 ¼ x 9 ¾ inches; gelatin silver print.
Illustration for Edith and Little Bear Lend a Hand (New York: Random House, 1971).

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