Small Is Beautiful

Multi-talented artists build miniature cities with their towering creativity


Thankfully, not everyone has outgrown the shoebox dioramas of their school days. Opening today, 12 May 2010, at Manhattan’s Murphy and Dine gallery, “Small Is Beautiful” showcases miniature cities painstakingly constructed by five artists. Curated by Scion and Theme Magazine, the accomplished group builds upon the headlining motif, tapping into themes such as childhood, urbanism and cultural diversity.

Acclaimed for his wallpaper designs, prints and decorative arts, Dan Funderburgh (pictured below right) uses 2-D cutouts to create a layered 3-D metropolis (pictured below left) inspired by Maurice Sendak’s book “In the Night Kitchen.”


Lori Nix is known for building and photographing epic dioramas of natural and modern disasters. In a CH video, Nix gives a tour of her Brooklyn studio. Her architectural model (sketch pictured below left, model pictured top and below right) is a dystopic vision of the future from the 1940s.


Ji Lee blurs art and commercial design. At CH’s 99% Conference in 2009, he gave a talk about balancing creativity and commerce. Lee’s small-scale work (pictured below) deals with adolescence as an out-of-body experience.


The show also includes wall vignettes by Josh Cochran and runs until 16 May 2010.