Hidden Gems Edition VII

Refreshed every Friday at midday, Hidden Gems is a carefully curated selection of original art and world art news. This week, when many children around the world are hoping to have a certain doll left under the tree, we are looking at "Barbiecore" in original art as well as other children's toys.

A ground-breaking architectural survey on the history of the 'Barbie Dreamhouse' was published in December and reflects a wider obsession with the famous doll and her aesthetic influence this year. Topping the list as the most in demand children's toy for Christmas 2022 and featured in over 90,000 searches, Barbie is also getting her own film set to be released in 2023 where she is played by award-winning Australian actress Margot Robbie! But, feminist and anti-capitalist statements and aspects of hyper-pink escapism indicate that this trend is more than plastic and fantastic. Some of the powerful symbolism of Barbie can be felt in the artworks below.

Scroll down to read more.


Bisaillon Brothers


Emma Grzonkowski


John McCormack

barbie 48x40 the bisaillon brothers 2020 02 20T14 56 35 (1) 2385x1399

Featured art: 'Barbie', an original mixed media artwork by the Bisaillon Brothers. Was £5,750, Now £4,312.50. 

"I'm a Barbie Girl"

As the star of an upcoming film, subject of a new book, and the top Christmas toy of the year, 2022 has been a big year for 63 year old Barbie; but, this artistic attention is not new! She has been a key subject for artists throughout the decades such as Andy Warhol in the 1980s and Aqua in the famous song 'Barbie Girl' in the 1990s. Her undeniable association with consumerism and femininity in society makes her a potent symbol for artists to explore important subjects. It is this that makes Barbie an interesting paradox for ideas of feminism, capitalism, childhood, and more. 

The Bisaillon Brothers, Nigel Humphries, John McCormack, and Sarah Graham all explore colourful, exciting and nostalgic images of toys in their bold contemporary art but in entirely different ways!


Featured art [left to right]: 'United', an original artwork by the John McCormack Was £3,750, Now £2,437.50; 'Harley's Revenge' an original oil painting by Nigel Humphries, £4,950.

"In a Barbie World"

One of the most distinguishable characteristics of Barbie is her love of the colour pink! The newly released book tracing the history of Barbie's Dreamhouse illustrates this but, the bright and childlike style of the interiors is more modern than you might think! The new term 'Barbiecore' has been coined to refer to a recent bold, bright and pink style of interiors that emulate the playful ones in Barbie's Dreamhouse and have significantly increased in popularity over this year.

Interior and furniture designers like Hannah Dahl of 'The Dahl House' in L.A. and Ann Hepfer of 'MOOD', praise this design style and Ann notes “Pink is not just for eight-year-old girls anymore, or summer beverages— or summer for that matter [...] Pink is perennially a favourite that always gets invited to the party. It’s pretty. It’s happy. [Even] the subtlest little pop of pink is always a pleasant surprise. And I don’t see it going anywhere for a while.” Inspired by this hot architectural and artistic trend, our curated original artworks above feature bold shades of pink that can fit onto a range of interior styles; allowing you to bring a pop of playful pink into any space of your imagination... because life is your creation!

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This month's selection of original artworks highlights some beautiful masterpieces that can still be ordered in time for Christmas; even if it's just for you!

Our Winter Sale has landed!


Our annual winter sale is here. Shop up to 75% off selected limited edition and original artworks.

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