Welcome to the second Midweek Miniatura on the run up to the Spring show at the National Exhibition Centre, Birmingham UK. This is the UK’s premier venue, a fitting place for the UK’s foremost dolls’ house and miniature arts show.
Miniatura Hors d’oeuvres.
If, reading that, you immediately think that you left such childish things as doll’s houses behind you long ago but your interest is slightly piqued by reading about collectable miniature art, I’m happy to tell you that a tiny taster is available in February. In fact I’m more than happy to tell you as JaneLaverick.com scoops all other media sources to bring you here, first, news of a Mini Miniatura in Birmingham on February 6th 2010. This new event brings a spotlight on miniatures to Melbick’s garden centre in Coleshill, Birmingham, from 11 in the morning to 4 in the afternoon. Five regular Miniatura exhibitors will be present, each with a table full of miniatures, which you can buy then and there if you find yourself under the spell of enchantment that miniatures so often casts on new comers. Also present will be show organisers, the Hopwood family to answer any questions you may have. The exhibitors are: Country Treasures, who make miniature kitchen items, Herdwick Landscapes, who are house builders, Bags of Character, characterful polymer clay dolls, Plants Flowers and Trees (guess what they make?), Teeny Weeny teddies (guess again) and Daws Rockers who make rocking horses. They are all experienced exhibitors, enthusiasts and hobbyists who will be delighted to tell you all about the hobby and their own specialities. Entry to the garden centre, which has many other attractions beside plants, is free. You can find out more at www.g-l.co.uk click on ‘our stores’ for a map and opening times. If you are using Google Maps or some such the postcode is B46 3HY. Sounds like a nice free Saturday out, with something of interest for all the family. For more exhibitor information go to www.miniatura.co.uk though to be fair, the magic of miniatures is not always apparent through pictures, you need to get the item in your hand to activate the enchantment of a miniature version of reality. Without paying to enter the full show, regularly over 200 exhibits and a full day to see, you can experience a soupcon of miniatures for yourself, Saturday February 6th, if you’re in the Birmingham area. However, I do apologise in advance if you go to look and get hooked. It’s life, you know, small, where you can get your finger on it. Very satisfactory.
A show from the other side of the table.
Although there are many regular exhibitors at the world’s premier show, and, like an art show in any scale, they attract dedicated collectors, there is always room for someone new. I thought it would be an interesting use of this very immediate medium to follow the progress of a new exhibitor in the nerve wracking weeks leading up to the show.
Sindy Stanley had visited Miniatura and Bears and Dolls, the large art show run by the same organisers for some years. She had even exhibited at Bears and Dolls, three years ago. However the standing of Miniatura is such and the world wide collectors attracted are so numerous that contemplating the leap to exhibiting here is quite something. Sindy had asked about exhibiting three years ago and was turned down; recently she reapplied and was accepted.
Miniatura organisers are very picky. They can afford to be. Would-be exhibitors exceed places by a mile and only a fraction of those who enquire, fill in the form and get as far as submitting examples of their work for scrutiny, will receive the invitation. Artisans come from all over the planet to exhibit, many are already famous in ‘full size’ art before they miniaturize their speciality, some are world renowned with examples of their art in museums on all continents. Being invited to exhibit is a significant accolade.
When Sindy got the invite her first, elated, reaction was: Oh my goodness! That’s fantastic! Her second, third and forth reactions were: Am I good enough? Right now she feels as if she has been given the chance of a lifetime that she must not miss.
How would you feel if you were asked not only to show something you had made at a world class venue, but to cover a table with similar items – and they were all tiny? We’ll revisit Sindy next week and see if she’s buckling under the strain and bring you more news from the world’s hottest miniature art show here on JaneLaverick.com, the site with a big ear on the little art world.