A Closer Look - Australian Society of Miniature Art


Look closely. In the world of the miniature, every detail is scrupulously held within a small material form. The attention paid to these small objects seem to empower them with otherworldly abilities, as they draw you in and keep you there.

In the spirit of miniaturisation, all good things come in small packages - such as small acts of kindness. The power of this spirit has been strengthened through a long history. Ancient engraved gems, Egyptian Shabti dolls placed in tombs, medieval manuscripts with illuminated letters, and gothic boxwood miniatures have all held miniature powers. There have also been notable traditions in Asian and Arabic miniature art of manuscripts displaying heroes through decorative form.

In many cultures a small object was hidden and personal, often anthropomorphised, and carried in a deeply private mode. These trinkets, lockets and portrait boxes preceded wallet photographs and phone wallpapers of loved ones.

To be entranced by small objects is not only a romantic tradition but a contemporary state of being. Working in the miniature can provide a source of feeling in control over an otherwise uncertain world. Today’s artists extend their miniature practices as a reflection of contemporary art and the everyday.

A Closer Look presents these intricate homages to the practice of the miniature and keeps this long-kept tradition alive in form and spirit.

The Australian Society of Miniature Art

The Australian Society of Miniature Art was founded in 1985.

It aims to create miniature works of excellence, to foster traditional and modern techniques and to encourage public awareness and enjoyment of miniature works of art.

Artists work across a range of media including watercolour, oil and acrylic painting, printmaking, drawing and mixed media, as well as sculpture and hand-made books.


Image - Left: Jennifer O'Young Where Corals Lie 2022. artist’s book and box, dimensions variable
Right: Anna Warren Below Zero 2023. artist’s book, acrylic and pen 7 x 10 x 1 cm
Courtesy and © the artist and MAC yapang.











  • Saturday, 10 February 2024 | 09:00 AM - Sunday, 07 April 2024 | 03:00 PM


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