Home | What
is Miniature Art? | About
MASF | MASF's
Permanent Collection | Annual Exhibition
Join MASF | Member Websites | Member Backroom | MASF Scholarships
What is Miniature Art?
Miniature art is fine art. Miniature
art is a specialty art, not a novelty art. Through the ages it
has been considered an art form. Miniature art is most often
extremely detailed work, exquisite in color with a strength of
composition which can more than compete with larger paintings.
A compositional guide requires a gentle, no more than 1/6th scale
of the actual subject.
A miniature usually takes as
long or longer to produce as a large piece of art. A fine miniature
can be magnified many times and it will still hold together as
a fine work of art of much greater size. Most artists can work
large, but few have the skill and discipline to work miniature.
This unique art form, based on a minute scale, traces its roots
back to the book paintings and illuminated manuscripts of the
There is much debate as to if
there is a technique to be considered as the best, more accurate,
or most correct technique... Techniques such as stippling, hatching
and pointillism are sometimes only discovered under magnification.
The answer is to study others from past to present. Whatever
technique is used, it should meticulously handled and the workmanship
flawless. Miniature art sometimes defeats the spectator's belief
as to what is possible for the artist to create in such a small
Man's fascination with creating
in small scale has been evidenced in many of the world's civilizations.
Ancient Greeks adorned their walls with small murals while coins
and rings bore engraved portraits. In the Middle Ages, monks
often embellished manuscript pages with delicate illuminations
and bordered them with a red lead pigment called minium from
which miniature later evolved.
Elizabethan England was noted
for its miniature portraits on vellum and later ivory, which
served much as small photographs do today. A very personalized
form of art, it was easily carried in pocket or locket. The period
of exploration and colonization brought the miniature to America's
shores where its European heritage soon reflected the influences
of the New World and its challenges and freedoms. The advent
of photography in the mid-nineteenth century drastically reduced
the appeal of the miniature portrait. However, the love of creating
art "in the small" did not die.
The end of the last century and
the early years of the twentieth century witnessed the revival
period of interest in miniaturism followed somewhat later by
the current resurgence. Today's practitioners of American Miniaturism
reach far beyond the portrait field, embracing a wide variety
of subject matter, media and techniques.
On the practical side, miniature
art, with its minimal space requirements and favorable cost comparisons,
places original fine art within the reach of both art lovers
The Miniature Art Society of
730 Broadway, 2nd Floor
Dunedin FL 34698
||1497 Main Street
Dunedin, FL 34698 USA
To contact MASF's Administrator,
images © MASF and the respective artists. Artwork featured
on this website has been awarded in a MASF Exhibition or is part
of the Permanent Collection. Photos courtesy of Andrew Gott and
Wes Siegrist. Miniatureartsocietyofflorida.com/miniature-art.com
is the official website of The Miniature Art Society of Florida.
All artwork, images and contents of this website are © Miniature
Art Society of Florida and the respective Artists.