Lotte Pritzel. Dolls for the showcase.

Lotte Pritzel. Art doll Artist. Art Deco costume dolls.
Lotte Pritzel

Lotte Pritzel. Dolls for the showcase.

Lotte Pritzel (Charlotte Pagel) 1887 Breslau – †1952 Berlin.

The text given here has its origin in a free translation of the German wikipedia entry about Lotte Pritzel. The images come almost all of the original publications from the period of her activity and in accordance with the print quality of the time. One may regrets and want better quality, however, correspond exactly this grainy shots with the glamorous, morbid chic of this beautiful and rarely seen dolls.

Lotte Pritzel, called “The Cougar” belonged to the Munich Bohème and frequented artistic circles which brought together the Simplicissimus, before she moved to Berlin. Karl Zuckmayer reported in As if it were a piece of me, a stay at Lotte Pritzel and her husband, Dr. Gerhard Pagel: “I arrived at Lotte Pritzel, Mirls best friend, whose genius puppet-creatures at that time long feature articles and essays were written, delicate wax and fabric structure of refined elegance, with always a depraved childlike expression, as some forms of Beardsley. Away from the obscene and thus more appealing, even for solid buyer. […] Many nights I heard them, when in her studio, on the sewing table under adorable silk and cambric, sat on my manuscripts […], the two from the next room – in that bright on brain intoxication that the white powder irresistible for the addict does – talk, argue and muttering to each other. “

From Lotte Pritzels dolls that were sold to the United States, very many copies have not survived. Four advertising characters that they produced about 1912 on behalf of Hermann Bahlsen, are among the works Pritzels that are not lost. They were seen in Berlin as part of the exhibition “The doll artist and costume designer Lotte Pritzel” 2002/2003.

Her artist dolls and possibly their lithography cycle “Dance – movements and costumes” of 1919 inspired dancers such as Anita Berber or Niddy Impekoven, as a costume designer she occurred mainly in the 1920s in appearance. So she equipped in 1925 about the actors in Klabund “Chalk Circle” and in Heinrich von Kleist’s Cathy of Heilbronn.

Also Rainer Maria Rilke’s text “On the pupae of the Lotte Pritzel”, published in 1921 with illustrations by the artist, is one of the handed down products of Lotte Pritzel.

1923 turned the UFA a documentary entitled: The Pritzelpuppe.

Dolls for the showcase. Published 1911.

Dolls for the showcase. Lotte Pritzel. Art doll Artist. Art Deco costume dolls.
Dolls for the showcase
Portrait Lotte Pritzel 1916. Portrait by Hanns Holdt
Lotte Pritzel 1916. Portrait by Hanns Holdt

New wax dolls by Lotte Pritzel. Published in 1914.


  • On Dolls by Kenneth Gross.
  • German Art and Decoration, Vol 29, Darmstadt 1912.
  • Erich Mühsam, Tagebücher 1910 – 1924
  • Bachelors by Rosalind Krauss (October Books)
  • Surrealism and Women. Mary Ann Caws, Rudolf Kuenzli and Gwen Raaberg, Cambridge: MIT Press, 1991.
  • Cat. Lotte Pritzel 1887 – 1952, puppets of vice and ecstasy, Munich City Museum, 1987. (Lotte Pritzel Puppen des Lasters des Grauens und der Ekstase)
  • Deutsche Kunst und Dekoration. Wohnungskunst, Malerei, Plastik, Architektur, Gärten, Künstlerische Frauenarbeiten. XVI. Jg., Heft 3 (Dezember 1912). 
  • Art and the Transitional Object in Vernon Lee’s Supernatural Tales
  • Rainer Maria Rilke: On the Wax Dolls of Lotte Pritzel. Rilke wrote, “Sexless as the dolls of childhood were, can find no decease in their stagnant ecstasy, which has neither inflow nor outflow.” (Zu den Wachs-Puppen von Lotte Pritzel) Rainer Maria Rilke and Lou Andreas-Salomé: The Correspondence.
  • Wieland Schmied: The Engineer of Eros (Essay appeared at: Hans Bellmer, Hatje Cantz Verlag 2006)
  • Walter Benjamin: Lob der Puppe. Kritische Glossen zu Max v. Boehns  »Puppen und Puppenspiele« 1930. (Praise the doll. Critical glosses to Max von Boehn `s ” Dolls And Puppets ” 1930.)
  • “Dolls And Puppets” by Max Von Boehn. Translated by Josephine Nicoll. With a Note on Puppets by George Bernard Shaw. Walton Press (November 9, 2010)
  • Johannes R. Becher: Gedichte um Lotte. Leipzig, Insel 1919. Liebesgedichte um die Puppenkünstlerin Lotte Pritzel, der ersten Freundin von J. R. Becher.
  • Clement Greenberg, “The Avant-Garde and Kitsch,” in Collected Essays and Criticism.
  • Sensible Ecstasy: Mysticism, Sexual Difference, and the Demands of History (Religion and Postmodernism).
  • Georges Bataille, Story of the Eye. For the original see Georges Bataille, Histoire de l’oeil, in Bataille, Oeuvres complètes, tome 1, Paris: Gallimard.
  • Roland Barthes, “The Metaphor of the Eye,” in his Critical Essays, Chicago: Northwestern University Press, 1972.
  • The Language of Fashion by Roland Barthes.
  • Addicted to dolls. Die Zeit 1967)
Lotte Pritzel Portrait. Art doll Artist. Art Deco costume dolls.
Lotte Pritzel 1913


  • DIE PRITZELPUPPE. Directed by Ulrich Kayser. Written by: Maria Elisabeth Kähnert. Camera: Max Brinck. Length: 14min. With Blandine Ebinger, Niddy Impekoven, Lotte Pritzel. Production: Universum Film AG (Ufa), Cultural Department, Berlin.

Georges Bataille – À perte de vue (english sub)


Games of the Doll by Derek Sayer (Outtake from Prague, Capital of the Twentieth Century: A Surrealist History

50-minute documentary program co-produced by Amip-France 3. Director: André S. Labarthe well-known as co-founder and original developer of “Cinéma, de notre temps”, here portrays the French writer Georges Bataille (1897-1962), whose work ventures, at the same time, into the fields of literature, anthropology, philosophy, economy, sociology and history of art. Initially broadcasted on 30 April 1997, the film contains the interviews with Pierre Klossowski and Jacques Pimpanneau. The French title could be translated as “As-Far-as-The-Eye-Can-See (At the Limit of Vision)”, which may well constitute a literary reference to the Bataille’s first book, “Story of the Eye”.

Tatsumi Hijikata. Three “Bellmers” (Dance). The dolls of Hans Bellmer.

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