Dummy Board Figures with Susanne M Newstead 

Tuesday 11th September 2012 

We had an interesting talk on the Dummy Board figure, the folk art origins and how it was used through the centuries. The oldest known one is of Charles the Good of Flanders which is 13th Century. We saw many amazing slides of the dummy boards throughout the presentation, some of which sold for around 5K.

We were introduced to the methods used, painting direct onto the treated wood with oils then cut out, some of the old ones were taken from canvases and mounted on to wood then cut out with edges bevelled away from the subject to give it a 3D look, various supporting methods were used throughout the centuries to give life to the subjects.

Susanne explained how she originally became interested in the Dummy Board figure, first painting one to stand in front of her fireplace and her interest in this art form just took off from there.  Initially painting the full size boards but she now focuses her talents by painting miniatures for dolls house collectors.  These were amazing to see with some displayed in a little Victorian room box all at a 12th of the original size. 

Written by Ruth Marsden, Photos by Emily Pool

Photographs courtesy of Emily Pool