Wednesday, February 4, 2015

The Obsession of Huguette Clark

There is so much to share about this unusual and interesting story of an amazing miniature collection. I had a difficult time paring it down for a fb post! Oh what a movie this would make! The late heiress Huguette Clark (1906-2011) was known for her reclusive nature, rarely leaving her apartment and spending the last two decades of her life voluntarily living in a hospital. Clark’s life was full of eccentric tales. For example, she owned two mansions in California and New York worth a combined $150 million — but she never visited either location. She also spent more than 20 years living in New York’s Beth Israel Hospital at a cost of more than $400,000 a year, even though she did not have any diagnosed illness. She lived to be 104. However, it was Clark’s passion, perhaps even obsession, for dolls and dollhouses that might be the most interesting fact about her life. Huguette’s habits and hobbies—specifically, her passion for collecting dolls and commissioning dollhouse models of Japanese palaces—became fodder for questioning her sanity. Clark’s passion for dolls and dollhouses was so strong it trumped her reclusive nature. In the late 1950s Clark reportedly left her Fifth Avenue mansion to attend a Christian Dior fashion show — so she could purchase clothes for her dolls.After her death, it was discovered that she had amassed an enormous collection of miniatures which were lined up and meticulously cataloged. It is difficult to find photos of the dollhouses themselves. Two books of interest are: ‘The Phantom of Fifth Avenue’ and ‘Empty Mansions’. This story has me fascinated! ~judy 


  1. Hello Judy,
    What a collection!
    Big hug,

  2. More photos of Huguette Clark and her dolls and dollhouses are on the website of the bestselling book "Empty Mansions: The Mysterious Life of Huguette Clark and the Spending of a Great American Fortune," at


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