Figurines of Disney characters have been manufactured since the early 1930s. Early figurines are usually of Mickey and Minnie Mouse an, a little late, Donald Duck. Many of these have been of poor quality but the ceramic figures from two periods are of particular interest to collectors.
In the late 1950s, Disney licensed a variety of miniature ceramic figurines of its cartoon characters. These were manufactured between about 1955 and 1960 by Hagen-Renaker. The first figures were from Disney’s then current Lady and the Tramp. These were followed by figures of characters from the Alice in Wonderland, Dumbo, Bambi and Cinderella movies and cartoon characters, including Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, Pluto and Huey, Dewey and Louie. Some of these were later re-issued and a set of Fantasia figurines was produced in 1982.
In 1992, Walt Disney Studios began producing fine animation art figurines itself. These are made from a special low-fire porcelain, often enhanced with another material such as crystal, glass or a precious metal. Each figurine has a back stamp with Walt Disney’s signature and a symbol indicating the year in which it was made.