Hanni Sager Mexican Folk Toy Collection

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Living in San Agustín Etla is an extraordinary person called Hanni Sager. Hanni is a world treasure. For many years, she’s suffered from muscular dystrophy - a serious and painful disease - and she’s severely disabled by it. But it’s only her body that’s suffering, not her mind and spirit, which are deeply healthy. She’s a model for us all.

Hanni was born and brought up in Switzerland, moved to Canada and became a naturalized citizen. There she ultimately became known as Toronto’s Toy Lady. She amassed a first-class collection of toys from around the world, showed them in exhibitions, and gave lectures about them.

Annually for ten years, she put on wonderfully imaginative and hugely popular programs at Toronto’s cultural center, Harbourfront. They all centered on toys and play, among them a teddy bears’ picnic and a play doll-and-toy hospital where in a real ambulance not-so-real doctors and nurses dispensed prescriptions like “three hugs and a bedtime story” for ailing toys. Photographs by Ronnie Burbank.(scroll down for more pictures; click on a picture to activate slideshow).

Hanni Sager, Miniature Shoes, (blue)

Hanni Sager, Miniature Shoes, (blue)

Hanni Sager, Miniature Shoes (green)

Hanni Sager, Miniature Shoes (green)

Hanni Sager, Miniature Shoes, (tan)

Hanni Sager, Miniature Shoes, (tan)

Hanni Sager, Miniature Shoes, (grey)

Hanni Sager, Miniature Shoes, (grey)

Hanni Sager, Cat Figure

Hanni Sager, Cat Figure

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure

Hanni Sager, Mouse Figure

Hanni Sager, Mouse Figure

Hanni Sager, Monkey Figure

Hanni Sager, Monkey Figure

Hanni Sager, Figure With Sombrero

Hanni Sager, Figure With Sombrero

Hanni Sager, Figure With Sombrero

Hanni Sager, Figure With Sombrero

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Figure

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Figure

Hanni Sager, Mask Yellow Bird

Hanni Sager, Mask Yellow Bird

Hanni Sager, Mask Skull With Hat (Crown)

Hanni Sager, Mask Skull With Hat (Crown)

Hanni Sager, Mask Skull

Hanni Sager, Mask Skull

Hanni Sager, Mask Clown

Hanni Sager, Mask Clown

Hanni Sager, Small Mask, Man (pink hat)

Hanni Sager, Small Mask, Man (pink hat)

Hanni Sager, Mask Woman

Hanni Sager, Mask Woman

Hanni Sager, Mask White Bird, (Chicken?)

Hanni Sager, Mask White Bird, (Chicken?)

Hanni Sager, Coffin With Skull, (black)

Hanni Sager, Coffin With Skull, (black)

Hanni Sager, Coffin With Skull (Yellow)

Hanni Sager, Coffin With Skull (Yellow)

Hanni Sager, Small Skeleton (Gold Crown)

Hanni Sager, Small Skeleton (Gold Crown)

Hanni Sager, Large Skeleton

Hanni Sager, Large Skeleton

Hanni Sager, Skull, (Red Eyes)

Hanni Sager, Skull, (Red Eyes)

Hanni Sager, Skeleton ("Jose")

Hanni Sager, Skeleton ("Jose")

Hanni Sager, 3 Skeleton Figurines

Hanni Sager, 3 Skeleton Figurines

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Figurine (blue tinsel)

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Figurine (blue tinsel)

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Figurine, (Pink Eyes)

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Figurine, (Pink Eyes)

Hanni Sager, 9 Skeleton Figurines

Hanni Sager, 9 Skeleton Figurines

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Figurine (green eyes)

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Figurine (green eyes)

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Riding Horseback

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Riding Horseback

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Riding Horseback

Hanni Sager, Skeleton Riding Horseback

Hanni Sager, Skeleton in Monk's Clothing

Hanni Sager, Skeleton in Monk's Clothing

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure with sword

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure with sword

Hanni Sager, Spider Figurine

Hanni Sager, Spider Figurine

Hanni Sager 3 Spider Figurines

Hanni Sager  3 Spider Figurines

Hanni Sager Fur Monkey on Tricycle

Hanni Sager Fur Monkey on Tricycle

Hanni Sager, Ferris Wheel Toy With Babies

Hanni Sager, Ferris Wheel Toy With Babies

Hanni Sager, Airplane Toy

Hanni Sager, Airplane Toy

Hanni Sager, Butterfly Pull Toy

Hanni Sager, Butterfly Pull Toy

Hanni Sager, Tin Toys, Butterfly/Ferris Wheel/Circus Ride/Sliding Toy

Hanni Sager, Tin Toys, Butterfly/Ferris Wheel/Circus Ride/Sliding Toy

HannI Sager, Cat, Black Striped (foam)

HannI Sager, Cat, Black Striped (foam)

Hanni Sager, Rooster Toy (foam)

Hanni Sager, Rooster Toy (foam)

Hanni Sager, Animal Whistle

Hanni Sager, Animal Whistle

Hanni Sager, Toy, Rider on Bicycle

Hanni Sager, Toy, Rider on Bicycle

Hanni Sager, Bird and Cup Game (Yellow/Pink)

Hanni Sager, Bird and Cup Game (Yellow/Pink)

Hanni Sager, Bird Whistle, (Blue/Pink)

Hanni Sager, Bird Whistle, (Blue/Pink)

Hanni Sager, Whistle, Mermaid

Hanni Sager, Whistle, Mermaid

Hanni Sager, Whistle, Rabbit

Hanni Sager, Whistle, Rabbit

Hanni Sager, Whistle, Rooster

Hanni Sager, Whistle, Rooster

Hanni Sager Whistle, (Rooster?)

Hanni Sager Whistle, (Rooster?)

Hanni Sager, Whistle, Bird

Hanni Sager, Whistle, Bird

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure

Hanni Sager, "Laura" Doll

Hanni Sager, "Laura" Doll

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure

Hanni Sager, Rattle, Woman

Hanni Sager, Rattle, Woman

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure, Green

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure, Green

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure (Blue/Yellow)

Hanni Sager, Devil Figure (Blue/Yellow)

Hanni Sager, Tin Horn

Hanni Sager, Tin Horn

Hanni Sager, Tin Whistle (red, white,blue)

Hanni Sager, Tin Whistle (red, white,blue)

Hanni Sager, Tin Whistle

Hanni Sager, Tin Whistle

Hanni Sager, 3 Wooden Tops

Hanni Sager, 3 Wooden Tops

Hanni Sager, Miniature Musicians (Clay)

Hanni Sager, Miniature Musicians (Clay)

Hanni Sager, Cloth Dolls (detail)

Hanni Sager, Cloth Dolls (detail)

Hanni Sager, 8 Cloth Dolls

Hanni Sager, 8 Cloth Dolls

Hanni Sager, Cloth Dolls

Hanni Sager, Cloth Dolls

Hanni Sager, Cloth Dolls (detail)

Hanni Sager, Cloth Dolls (detail)