Miniature dissonance and the museum space: Reconsidering communication through miniaturisation

Davy, Jack William (2018) Miniature dissonance and the museum space: Reconsidering communication through miniaturisation. International Journal of Heritage Studies, 24 (9). pp. 969-983. ISSN 1352-7258

PDF (Accepted manuscript) - Accepted Version
Download (318kB) | Preview


Miniature objects from non-European contexts have ideological elements which are often overlooked in the museum space because their small size and iconic relations make them difficult to accurately interpret and disrupt curatorial efforts to impose meaning upon them; a situation I term miniature dissonance. This article will examine this phenomenon using three related case studies featuring miniatures from the Northwest Coast of North America. It will consider what might have been misunderstood in these objects and what they might originally have been intended to achieve, followed by an example from a recent Ancient Egyptian exhibition which demonstrates that this problem is both more widespread and problematic than is often recognised. These miniatures disrupt curatorial intentionality in the museum space, and it is only by carefully considering their origins and affordances that they can be adequately and accurately interpreted and displayed.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: miniaturisation,museums,seriation,northwest coast,communication
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of Art, Media and American Studies
University of East Anglia > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Research Groups > American Studies
Depositing User: Pure Connector
Date Deposited: 18 Jan 2018 16:30
Last Modified: 30 Sep 2021 10:04
DOI: 10.1080/13527258.2018.1428669

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item