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Those Were the Days: Pop Icon TV Show Sets REIMAGINED as Miniature Metal Marvels

Jill Orlov is a classically trained and award-winning architect, sculptural furniture designer and innovative miniaturist. She creates both full scale furniture as well as miniature objects and vignettes in 1/12th scale. Utilizing mild steel she makes by hand along with cast metals and reclaimed objects including vintage wooden drawers, boxes, crates, plumbing parts, bicycle parts and other items often considered to be castaways, her signature style is truly unparalleled.

Orlov’s fascination with the creative process, including miniatures, began during childhood where she could be found making furnishings and accessories for her dollhouse using sculpting clay and other traditional materials.

Throughout her architectural training and career, Jill came to realize her favorite part of the complex design process was the making of models. “...but (all my designs) began with several scaled models. Throughout architecture school, my favorite part of the design process was making models. The built environment…miniaturized!”

Jill’s love for design was unfulfilled; she often felt a disconnect between the spaces she would create for a client from her own personality. It was through enrollment in a welding class that her creative and career turning points occurred.

This new-found use of metals and the processes involved in their fabrication have led to the design of a range of full size and fine scale miniatures, many depicting real life scenarios, reimagined.

Jill’s current focus in full scale includes the design and creation of open floor rooms floating within the framework of a usable table for use in the home or office setting.

One example is a sofa table constructed of mild steel with an oil-based sealed frame and thick glass top containing a floating vignette of a living room complete with fireplace, glass candlesticks, wax candles, paper books, copper mesh carpet among other novel creations.

She customizes these tables for her clients to reflect either a favorite existing room, their idea of an unattainable dream room or a setting that is “reimagined” from either a distant memory from the past, including quintessential rooms from television and film.

This concept of creating “reimagined” spaces extends into her Contained Objects of Art series of 1/12th scale miniature vignettes, including an exciting new piece created for her solo exhibition at The Gallery of D. Thomas Fine Miniatures in Westchester County, New York.

Archie & Edith's Sitting Room in a Box 15-1/4" wide x 6" deep x 15-1/2" tall

“Archie and Edith’s Sitting Room in a Box” is based loosely on the now famous living room set from the 1970’s television sitcom All in the Family, and includes her “reimagined” view of Archie’s tattered wingback chair juxtaposed to Edith’s more lady-like “pin-cushion”chair. The vignette is set inside a wooden drawer from a 1950’s office cabinet (you can almost hear Archie bellow “stifle it, Edith!”).

Brady Bunch Stair in a Box 17-1/4" wide x 7-1/2" deep x 15-3/4" tall

This signature piece will be displayed along with two other vignettes including the open plan first floor inspired by The Brady Bunch and Julia Child’s Kitchen also used as her TV set in Cambridge, Massachusetts. These whimsical and intricately styled settings form the new exhibition “Those Were the Days…Pop Icon TV Sets REIMAGINED: Miniatures by Jill Orlov.”

Julia's Kitchen in a Box 20-1/4" wide x 10-1/4" deep x 12-5/8" tall

The exhibition is based on the concept developed by Darren T. Scala, curator of the The Gallery at D. Thomas Fine Miniatures. “Like so many who came of age in the 1970s’s, Jill and I have deep creative and artistic connections to the television shows we watched. We have created this exhibition to display the continuing influence of 1970’s pop icon television on art, design, the decorative arts and contemporary culture. I am thrilled to showcase Jill’s amazing work!” says Scala.

“Those Were the Days…Pop Icon TV Sets REIMAGINED: Miniatures by Jill Orlov,” will be on display from May 21 through July 31, 2017. Jill will discuss these works, her creative process and her inspirations at an open house/meet-the-artist hosted by Scala on Sunday, May 21, 2017 from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM.



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.

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