Renate Müller

One of the handful of reasons I went to New York over the weekend was to see the Renate Müller's Show at R20th Century. I'd been watching her work for the last few years after Andy posted about her toys. A month ago the New York Times ran an article which detailed her history, making me fall in love with her work all over again and compelling me to buy a ticket to NYC to see her show.

The story wove a tale too good to be true complete with being raised in a family of toy makers and attending a toy makers high school. She designed many of her patterns in the mid 1960's only to be transferred out of the toy makers department in 1976, loosing proximity and control of their production in the West German Toy Collective where she'd worked. "The toy factory collective continued to produce Müller’s work without her input (and without compensating her). When the Berlin Wall fell, the toy collective shut down, and in 1991 she bought her designs back. The metal forms she uses today, the sewing machines and cutters in her studio, the cardboard patterns hanging on the wall — they are all hers from the 1960s. When she reclaimed her designs, she also decided to reclaim her authorship." Read the rest of the NY Times article here.

The show was beyond amazing and changed the way I look at and think about making toys- Read more about her on the R20th Website, watch a video from her studio, and see many many more images of her remarkable work.


  1. awe look at that teddy he looks so snuggly:) I would love to travel to New York its my dream :)

  2. oooh, my best friend from kindergarten had one of her big hippos, we used to ride on it and pretend it was a horse and we were cowboys...
    i wonder what happend with it, they are sooo expensive on ebay these days.