small is beautiful: exhibition of miniature art

My friend Amy and I like to go to exhibitions… it’s kind of our thing. So when a friend of hers suggested the Small is Beautiful exhibition in South Kensington, of course we had to check it out. The London experience closes on the 17th of July, so you’d better hurry if you want to see it. I believe it’s on in Paris as well, though, and it may travel elsewhere too.

The cover image for this blog post is by Lisa Swerling, and it caught my eye along thanks to both Leia and the sparkle! But there was more than just pop culture.

A wide variety of pieces are in this extraordinary Tardis of an exhibition. It took us a good 90 minutes at least to make a round of the whole thing, and many pieces stayed in our minds afterwards.

Slinkachu is a name that I’d at least heard of before, and every other artist was pretty unfamiliar to me, but what a collection! Intricate details and a massive amount of imagination in every piece.

Vincent Bal‘s quirky illustrations were adorable. It really makes me curious as to how he began this series. What was it that sparked the first one, and how did he progress from there? Definitely an artist to follow and research further.

Basia Wesolowska‘s work fed my love of fantasy and the cotton candy circus tent was a winner for me. The other pieces had a little more grunge than I like, but that one was so ethereal and light.

Thomas Doyle‘s minatures were inset in massive plasterboard sheets. Very effective for scale as well as presentation, I thought.

Gaspard Mitz made me laugh a lot. His box stories have a rather pleasing sarcastic wit to them.

Jasenko Đorđević makes art on pencil leads. Incredible!!! Also apparently a Marvel fan.

Juho Könköllä creates these ethereal looking warriors using origami, would you believe it?! An unfolded sheet was on exhibit as well. Incredible work!

Camile Ortoli makes these beautiful paper buildings. Fascinating to me was the effect of white on white on white and the beauty of the classical symmetry of the façades of these buildings. Apparently her work is often used in window displays. It would definitely stop me in my tracks.

NV Illustration are a duo based in Ahmedabad, India. Nayan and Vaishali work together to make these painted 3-d animals – a series of 1000 little pieces, the text said.

Mulvany and Rogers and Nicolas Guerins both make hyperrealistic buildings and dolls-house-sized – fully functional – furniture. A pleasure to look at with detail upon detail to discover. One almost wishes to take Alice’s potion in order to shrink to fit inside!

The toadstool-painters piece by Minimiam was a charming piece. I liked the humour in it immensely and spent quite a bit of time exploring each little detail. One could almost imagine it to be a childrens book brought to life.

This second piece by Minimiam was fascinating to all the children at the show, who mostly wanted to decide which type of candy they could get their parents to buy them.

Tristan Blondeau‘s intricate imaginary worlds were in his showreel, a part of the video being played at the exhibition. It highlighted how he uses these for stop-motion animation. Fascinating.

Esha Bijutkar is an engineer, and her precision shows it. You know I loved the foodie bits for sure!

Le Mini de Claudia‘s work was one of my favourites too. Again, my food obsession, but how beautiful, right?!

The outstanding piece in the entire show was created by Ronan-Jim Sevellec. If I had my choice of studio, this is exactly how it would look… the table in the middle would be covered with art in progress, there’d be more plants and dogs and art, but essentially, this is my perfect room! I would never leave.

Obviously, I took many pictures of this piece, probably in the hope that it would materialise in reality someday, some way!

Lucia Dolgopolova does micro-crochet. This was a term I had never even heard of, though I crochet sometimes myself. It’s absolutely miniscule, and exquisite. I have never before wanted to own a microscopic crocheted octopus.

Equally miniscule was the work of Julia Cissel. This last room was full of such absolutely microscopic work… from magnifying glasses to microscopes, visual aids were definitely needed.

At the end of the show were some of David A Lindon‘s pieces, made within the eye of a needle. While not much to my taste, I really have to mention them here simply for the incredible fact that they were so teeny-tiny.

I hope you enjoyed looking at these images and will go and see the actual exhibition if you can as well. It is closing soon in London, but presumably will tour! Let me know if you do go and what your favourite pieces were. I haven’t revealed them all here – there were many, many more – only the ones I wanted to remember later on.

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