(Roughly) Daily

“The basic principle of miniatures is always clear: it is that time in making commands time in looking”*…

 

A portrait of Queen Elizabeth, carved on a speck of gold, framed in the eye of a needle

Graham Short, a British micro-engraver, works in miniature… extreme miniature.  In addition to the portrait of the Queen (completed to celebrate her 90th birthday on April 21), above…

Short has also inscribed a quote from Abraham Lincoln on the tip of a Civil War bullet, one from Rosa Parks on the rim of a commemorative medal, and one from Steve Jobs on a gold microchip the size of a fingertip. The piece that gave him the most battle scars are the words “Nothing is Impossible”, which he scratched along the business edge of a razor blade. He used another razor edge as a canvas for a depiction of The Last Supper

da Vinci’s The Last Supper, engraved along the edge of a razor blade

More on Short’s painstaking technique– and more examples of his work– at “Inside the studio of the ‘micro-engraver’ who works between heartbeats to keep his hand steady.”

* Robert Hughes, Time,  Jan. 28, 1980

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As we get small, we might send striking birthday greetings to Victor Vasarely; he was born on this date in 1906.  Vasarely attended medical school in Hungary before giving it up to study academic painting in Paris, where he became an advertising and graphic designer, painting on the side.  His 1937 painting, Zebra, is considered one of the earliest (if not indeed the earliest) example of Op Art— a movement of which he is widely accepted as both “grandfather” and leader.

Vasarely’s Zebra

source

 

Written by LW

April 9, 2016 at 1:01 am

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