Southern Elegance 

                      Reflections of the South

African American Dolls

"Marie Laveau" with Crystal Ball

 New Orleans Voodoo Queen of 1815

Mysterious Marie Laveau, remembered by some as a woman of mercy, a healer of the sick, and by others as a woman of evil who made bargains with the devil.  The New Orleans Voodoo Queen Doll is pictured below seated on a hand-crafted wooden stand designed by Brian Bernard. Brian has mounted a tree stump with a crystal ball set upon the stump. This African American Doll is 16 inches in height and is dressed in a white peasants blouse and a turquoise green skirt trimmed with eyelet lace. The wig is handmade from black mohair strands.  The mohair wigs lend a natural authentic African American appearance to each doll.   Accessories include: gold hoop earrings and a crystal ball. One of Marie's distinct features is her bare feet. JoAnn's unique doll body design allows Marie to be positioned in various ways by bending her arms at the elbow joints and by bending her legs at the knee joints. This feature adds to the lifelike quality of the piece. Accompanying the character doll is a booklet and display card designed by JoAnn to include; the number of the piece, the inspirational sketch, a short bio, and a story about the character. All clay pieces are limited editions of 500. A numbered and signed Certificate of Authenticity is also provided with the character doll.

African American Doll

Marie Laveau w/ Crystal Ball

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Sample Booklet

Click here to view contents of display card and booklet

Clicking of the sample booklet cover (above) will bring you to the story page for this character doll.  The previous and next buttons below photo will surf you through the large doll photo pages. Clicking of the Back button will bring you back to the
African American Heritage Doll page. Clicking any of the icons in the menu options row below will bring you to that particular destination.



ŠJo Ann Bernard

JoAnn's Comments: When my dolls were ready to market, I did as the old vendors of the 1800's did before me, I brought my wares to the Vieux Carre'. My two sons, Brian Jr. (age 14) and Brandon (age 9) would sometimes escort me in my marketing adventures. I had no idea where to begin, so I thought perhaps the Voodoo Museum may have an interest in my Marie Laveau. On this particular trip, Brian Jr. was elected to be his mom's sales assistant. I entered the museum with my very timid fourteen year old behind me, not thinking of the environment I was exposing him to. Once in the museum, the present day Voodoo Queen and an elderly man dressed in a white robe (I think he was a high priestess) were also in the shop. My son just stood to the side uncertain of his surroundings and watched as his mother gave her sales pitch to the shops owner. He was a very nice man. The gentleman had no interest in my creations at all, but he was interested in hiring me as a real voodoo doll maker (the kind with pins). Not wanting to be impolite and considering my surroundings I did not express my non-interest in producing this particular line of doll. I just stood there and politely listened. Brian and I often reminisce and giggle about our first venture as marketing entrepreneurs.

Original African American Dolls

 by JoAnn Bernard

An original clay doll collection, for the doll collecting enthusiast

Original African American Dolls recreating Louisiana Life in the 1800's.  Learn about Louisiana Culture through this African American Heritage Doll collection inspired by sketches, photographs and stories of the 1800's.  These African American life like hand made dolls have attached booklets and display cards with short historical essays about the character.  All dolls are reproduced in clay using JoAnn Bernard's plaster molds developed from her original doll designs. Doll wigs, clothing, dress designs, and props are all handmade by the artist.

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Louisiana Heritage Dolls by JoAnn Bernard

Louisiana Heritage Dolls

Figurines, Sculptured Slates/sketches by JoAnn Bernard

Figurines, Sculptured Slates and Inspirational sketches

Oil Paintings by JoAnn Bernard

Oil Paintings

Duck Carvings by JoAnn Bernard

Duck Carving

Click here to read about me

Doll Making Techniques/Bio


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