There’s something about miniatures: model railway layouts, dollhouses, fairy gardens, minis for games like Warhammer or Dungeons & Dragons. Miniatures let us recreate realms of our own, places of fantasy that provide a refuge from the very real world around us. If you tend to lavish love on the littlest things, you’ll get a kick out of artist Lea Redmond’s super tiny offerings.
A few years ago Lea started an ongoing social art project by setting up a miniature postal service in shops and cafes. There she sat at a doll sized rolltop desk offered a letter transcription service to people passing by. Each letter was
written in the tiniest script, tucked into a miniature envelope, sealed with a wax emblem, and packed with a magnifying glass. It was a hit. Now The World’s Smallest Post Service kit makes it possible for anyone to create these super small letters, including thumbnail-sized envelopes as well as teensy gift boxes and miniature newspaper sheets for packing. Writing on this scale is possible with the 0.2mm fine-tipped micron writing pen included in the kit.
Redmond’s company Leaf Cutter Designs continues the theme by offering itty bitty custom cards, invitations, and packages to customers. The packages come with fictional newspaper, The Small Times, crumpled up inside.
This is only a micro example of Lea’s expansive imagination. She has nearly a dozen participatory projects including Conceptual Knitting, Mending Gallery, and a lovely Tag Exchange. A project even the kids can enjoy is Trophy Revival. As the guidelines suggest,
“Get out your old trophies, break them down, build them up again and give them a new life! Maybe someone gets a trophy for making you waffles? Maybe someone tells the best jokes? Grows the most beautiful broccoli?”
She also does custom designs, like diatom-adorned kid-wear for the eco-friendly clothing company No Enemy and has a line of “curious whimsical goods” including earrings for spontaneous seeding and a notebook paper embroidery kit.
A woman who uses a handmade bicycle-powered flour mill, has the patience to write the tiniest letters, and seeks to “create a more playful, peaceful world” lives in my kind of realm.