|+ Add opportunity|
"The miniature, then, is an attempt to reproduce the universe in graspable form. It represents a desire to possess the world more completely, to banish the unknown and the unseen. We are teased out of the world of terror and death, and under the enchantment of the miniature we are invited to become God.”
— The Fascination of the Miniature, Steven Millhauser, 1983
Much has been made of the laborious work of the miniaturist. The impossibly small has long been a fixture in the realm of the fantastic; recall the island empire of the Lilliputians, Alice’s impassably tiny doorway, the royal dollhouses of each monarchic playroom. In the more menial aspects of the day-to-day, delight and surprise is expressed too for these moments of delicacy and virtuosity. We reserve a special kind of wonder for instances of deepening intricacy and for the illuminating quality of the obsessive (or the obsessed) that is revealed by closer inspection, or under glass.
Why does this practice remain so enchanting in a time when our tools allow an ever-progressing level of dexterity? What does the process of reduction look like when we are increasingly engaged in digital spaces where physical size is growing less relevant? What carries over in the translation of scale, from a world-of-us to a world-of-that? How to best capture the clarity of a chair, a woodpecker, the dust of many years, when those things are removed from us bodily? Why the small? Minutiae is considering these questions, and others.