Thursday, October 7, 2010
Life in Miniature
As I continue to think about how most of the wonderful things (and some of the really terrible ones, too) are much bigger than we are, I am also remembering a story I heard on the radio once about the Thorne Miniature Rooms at the Art Institute of Chicago and how crowded that part of the museum always is, no matter how light the crowds are in the other areas of exhibits. There is something about miniatures that fascinates us.
I wonder, does our fascination have anything to do with trying to be in control? By imagining that we are the big God in the story and that all of the tiny people/furniture/houses/cars/trains are literally under our complete authority? Do we wish to be able to see every detail and to see the big picture and to be able to understand and comprehend it all because so much else in life is so big and unwieldy and out of control and beyond our understanding?
I always loved dollhouses and dolls and doll furniture and loved how I was the master storyteller in my dolls' lives. I could make them do what I wanted and invent their stories; I dressed them how I wanted and invented their dialogue. They were in my complete control. I suppose I played out all sorts of scenarios, from reliving my own stories with better endings to just making silly stuff up.
So maybe grown ups still wish to have the opportunity to manipulate the story too. And so build models and visit museums full of miniatures. Just a thought.