It was a banner year for miniatures in the United States from strong media attention to the category, to new shows and events, gallery exhibitions and emerging trends in the small arts. Here is a sampling of what's made this year so great! (photo: K. D. Alenti).
MINIATURES IN MAINSTREAM MEDIA
Miniatures moved to a mainstream position as reported in this New York Times article about folks who are as passionate about little things as we are .... “miniacs!” (Photo below: Phillip Nuveen)
In October, the Wall Street Journal talked about the folks who refurbish dollhouses in a whole new and modern way.
Author Nicole Cooley talks about her experience with miniatures in this piece published in The Atlantic. She also describes how for the first time since the 1970's interest in miniatures is on the rise.
MAJOR EXHIBITIONS FEATURING MINIATURES
During 2016, a number of major museums offered exhibitions featuring the small arts. The National Building Museum's Small Stories included several historic dollhouses, taking us through their historical significance. The show also featured artists from all over the world commissioned to create shadowboxes filled with imaginative scenes depicting the ideal dream house.
Miniaturist Thomas Doyle held his first solo exhibition of tiny works, If the Creek Don't Rise, at the Hudson River Museum in Yonkers, NY. In this show, themes of anxiety and foreshadowing of a bleak future were presented in micro scale and showed man's continual conflict between nature, relationships and history.
The Bruce Museum, in Greenwich CT, took a contemporary approach focusing on the natural world featuring work by artists including Lori Nix, Sally Curcio and Guy Laramee.
In the Gallery at D. Thomas Fine Miniatures, we featured talented artisans such as Michael Yurkovic, Thomas Doyle, Robert Off, Beth Freeman-Kane and Gerard Klein Hofmeijer. (Photo below: The Little Street by Gerard Klein Hofmeijer)
MINIATURIST MAKING THEIR MARK
New and noteworthy miniaturists included urban graffiti artisans: Ryan Thomas Monahan (BlackBook Gallery), Kevin D'Alenti and Damien Webb inspired by pop art, city life and all its grit and grime.
The modern miniature dollhouse realm saw work by artists including Mad Missy Minis (interior design), Modern Dollhouse Designs (luxury bespoke) and Whimsy Woods (contemporary heirloom). More on this mini movement can be found in this piece by Anita Butterworth in Babyology. (Photo below: Mad Missy Minis)
Newcomers to the scene include Laura Pointon, from Scatter Matter Studios, who creates whimsical mounted animal heads. Amanda K, from Panda Miniatures makes bongs and other adult-themed miniatures and Nathalie Heath from Wild Hare Miniatures offers a cool interpretation on the popular category of food minis. (photo below: Panda Miniatures)
INNOVATION IN MINIATURES
New and interesting ways folks are buying miniatures or becoming activated in the category include L. Delaney's (really) fabulous The Haunted Dollhouse that uses minis delivered by mail that work together to help solve a mystery.
In travel and destination, Gullver's Gate announced its upcoming Spring of 2017 opening in New York City's Times Square. This is BIG news for the mini world.
And a hearty shout-out to our very own SquintBox™, the first subscription-based service in this category to deliver a charming assortment of hand-curated/hand-crafted miniatures to subscriber's doors every month!
2016 was an exciting year for miniatures and we expect this momentum to continue. Be sure to check in on this blog space and our other social media platforms as we bring you the very latest news, innovation and trends in the mini world.
ABOUT D. THOMAS FINE MINIATURES
D. Thomas Fine Miniatures is a retail and gallery destination featuring top quality collectibles including 1/12th scale structure, furniture and accessories. The concept, designed to appeal to collectors, crafters and enthusiasts was created, in part, to raise awareness of miniatures as a decorative art form and to introduce the discipline not only to a new generation but to those who may just be discovering it! The gallery space showcases work in miniature by well-known artists from all over the world.