It's been an exciting year for miniatures! We've seen an absolute explosion of tiny-ness throughout social media, in commercial film, in advertising and exhibitions.
Nix + Gerber: "Empire"
We're seeing a rise in interest from the younger generation thanks to social media growth and interest from the contemporary art world. More and more enthusiasts are being introduced to miniatures and discovering the delight and excitement that miniatures offer.
Amanda Kelly's Tattoo Parlor
Here are some of the top trends and news about miniatures during 2017:
Exhibitions and Shows
Unpacked: Refugee Baggage
The past year saw a number of important exhibitions of work in the small arts. Architect and artist Mohamad Hafez created incredible dioramas depicting the immigrant struggle to flee from destruction in war torn countries in "Unpacked: Refugee Baggage" on view at the UNICEF House in New York.
We also saw new work by Team Nix+Gerber in "Empire" at ClampArt in New York City. The noteworthy exhibition at the Renwick Gallery at The Smithsonian brought out forensic crime scenes by Frances Glessner Lee.
Miniatures in Film and Advertising
Miniatures themes were seen in commercial film and advertising in 2017. Some examples include Downsizing, starring Matt Damon and Kristin Wiig, and the film adaptation of Jessie Burton's popular novel The Miniaturist.
In addition, a viral video using a tiny Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant received thousands of views. And, who could forget this se up in Astor Place in New York City to celebrate the new Top Restaurant Guide by Zagat (click to view below).
Photo: Kirstin VanSkiver
Online and Mainstream Media Coverage
Photo: Bobby Doherty/New York Magazine/The Cut
In addition to extensive coverage by online blogs and posts (DesignBoom, The Culture Trip and Culture Box), mainstream media picked up on the growing interest in miniatures with important articles in New York Magazine/The Cut (The Everything Guide to Mini Mania),
CBS Sunday Morning
Harper's Magazine: "Little Things: The Outsized Pleasures of The Very Small"), BBC News: "Inside the Wonderful World of Miniatures" and CBS Sunday Morning ("Tiny Kitchen") that took on the food miniatures trend (click photo above to see the segment with Jane Pauley!).
Themes and Evolving Genre
Kevin D'Alenti "Motel Room" 2017
In addition to the absolute explosion of interest in Food Miniatures (Tastemade, TinyFood.ig, AiClay) and expanded interest in Graffiti and Urban Art Miniatures and Micro Miniatures (especially in photography) some artists are moving miniatures to a darker place.
Kevin D'Alenti's "Motel Room" (above) diorama depicting well-worn accommodations in twelfth scale sleeze.
"Perfect Tan" by Abigail Goldman
Abigail Goldman's (Station16 Gallery, Montreal Canada) scenes feature disturbing themes of murderous mayhem (fun times!).
We also saw Dollhouse Art at the Norton Museum in West Palm Beach, Florida (Miss Lucy's 3 Day Dollhouse Party) and the Small Stories exhibition at the National Building Museum in Washington D.C. continued through the early part of the year.
Over the Top Miniatures
Over the Top Miniatures took center stage last year as artists soared to new heights and stretched their limits on what can be achieved in small scale. Althea Crome took 3rd prize at the Miniature Masterworks at the National Museum of Toys/Miniatures in Kansas City with her nativity scene knitted into a sweater featuring over 50,000 stitches.
New York City's Times Square welcomed the opening of Gulliver's Gate, the newest attraction featuring the world in 1/87th scale. Visitors are "transported to the world's most intriguing places and most captivating time periods."
D. Thomas Miniatures was on the Move!
Cold Spring, New York
We were on the move in a number of ways this past year: We relocated to a new space in Cold Spring, New York (The Shoppes on Main Street) and curated a number of exciting exhibitions of miniature works (Those Were the Days/Jill Orlov,