chapter  5
Miniaturisation and scale
ByAndrew Cochrane, Andrew Meirion Jones
Pages 18

Miniaturisation is a common material practice, and miniature artefacts are derived from a range of contexts, from Neolithic Turkey, to Iron Age and Roman periods in western Europe and the Aegean in prehistory. Scale works as an impressive strategy that charges things with psychological tensions, generating intense sensory and emotional experiences. It can also influence understandings of time and enhance cognitive speeds. This can result in feelings that are both empowering and interesting, but also unsettling or alienating. Hand-held dogu can provoke a number of responses, suggesting vulnerability, protection and intimacy. The making and keeping of small sculptures is an activity widely shared across all human societies, and some experimental psychologists suggest that encounters with small things can change their perceptions of time and space. In the case of the miniature La Candelaria pottery, Ben Alberti argues that size is not the measure of scale, but rather the intensity of decoration offers a measure of scale.