Getting Ready for the Chicago International Show

A handful of 1/12 scale pottery by IGMA Fellow member Troy Schmidt of Red Dragon Pottery.

A handful of 1/12 scale pottery by IGMA Fellow member Troy Schmidt of Red Dragon Pottery.

The upcoming Chicago International Show is my first show of 2015 and it will be my 10th anniversary as a dealer at this, the biggest miniatures show in this hemisphere. As I’ve been making and selling my miniatures for about 15 years, almost everything to do with that has evolved. Because what I make has changed, what I need to display it effectively has changed as well, so this year, a good bit of the time spent preparing for this show was devoted to developing and constructing a new display. When that was done, any remaining time was spent building up inventory. I am not alone in that.

A delectable preparation board in 1/12 scale by IGMA member Manuela Michieli.

A delectable preparation board in 1/12 scale by IGMA member Manuela Michieli.

If you visit the IGMA Facebook page, you will notice a number of dealers are busy putting together new pieces for the Chicago show and are posting photos on the IGMA page to help build interest and anticipation amongst those who will be attending. It is an exciting time for all of us; dealers and shoppers alike. I remember how exciting it was when I was a shopper and it is still just as exciting on the other side of the table. There will be well over 150 dealers at this  show. Glancing at the dealer list, it is a pleasure to see so many IGMA members among them.

A potted violet in 1/12 scale by IGMA Artisan member Peter Gabel, will be for sale at the Gallery of the Guild.

A potted violet in 1/12 scale by IGMA Artisan member Peter Gabel, will be for sale at the Gallery of the Guild.

The Guild will also be represented by a Membership/Guild School table staffed by the Guild School Director, Barbara Davis, the Guild Administrator, Carol Hardy, as well as other member volunteers standing in for them over the weekend. Side by side with that table you will find the Gallery of the Guild, which will be selling the work of many IGMA Artisan and Fellow members who are not otherwise represented at this show.

A very charming baby ensemble in 1/12 scale, made and donated to the IGMA Auction by IGMA Artisan member Sandra Swisher.

A very charming baby ensemble in 1/12 scale, made and donated to the IGMA Auction by IGMA Artisan member Sandra Swisher.

On Friday, at the close of the show, there will be an IGMA Gala Fundraising Auction held at the hotel just around the corner from the show entrance. Tom Bishop has kindly made space available to the Guild for this event, and the generous members and friends of the International Guild of Miniature Artisans have donated an amazing selection of pieces for the auction. With Duffy Wineman as the auctioneer, it promises to be a rollicking good time.

A spiral garden in 1/12 scale by IGMA member Pia Becker of Lamis Minis.

A spiral garden in 1/12 scale by IGMA member Pia Becker of Lamis Minis.

Saturday evening, at the close of the show, there will be another IGMA function designed to acquaint miniature aficionados with the Guild and its many programs. Much of the focus will be on the Guild School-and if you are unaware of what that is, I sincerely urge you to attend the program and find out.

Time to get back to work, only 4 more days to build up that inventory!

 

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Fun and Funds for a Good Cause

A fully jointed doll by Gale Elena Bantock.

A fully jointed doll by Gale Elena Bantock.

If we’re doing anything like a decent job at publicity, you’ve already heard that the International Guild of Miniature Artisans is hosting its 2nd Annual Auction at Tom Bishop’s Chicago International Show on April 17th. As the date draws closer, we are getting very excited to see the items that are arriving for the auction. Some of the donations are coming from the artist

A jointed teddy bear by Canadian miniature toy artist Barbara Logan.

A jointed teddy bear by Canadian miniature toy artist Barbara Logan.

themselves, many of whom are graciously creating one of a kind pieces especially for this auction; other donations are from collectors who have generously diverted choice items from their collections to support our cause. All of the auction items will be on display smack dab in the center of the Grand Ballroom during preview day Friday, April 17th so everyone there will have a chance to examine them in all their fine detail. For those who won’t be in attendance, or who haven’t yet decided, here are some photos to tempt you into joining us for

A Wooten desk with its plethora of drawers and compartments by Jim Gans.

A Wooten desk with its plethora of drawers and compartments by Jim Gans.

the evening. Our auctioneer extraordinaire, Duffy Wineman, will be drawing us all into an evening  of rollicking good fun–even if you’re not bidding!

 

An incredibly detailed 1/144 scale art gallery by IGMA Fellow member Julian Biggers.

An incredibly detailed 1/144 scale art gallery by IGMA Fellow member Julian Biggers.

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Funding Further Study

Inspired by her Italian Majolica studies, 1/12 scale plates by Fellow member Lee-Ann Chellis Wessel.

Inspired by her Italian Majolica studies, 1/12 scale plates by Fellow member Lee-Ann Chellis Wessel.

Part of the mission of the International Guild of Miniature Artisans is to encourage work of the highest quality. The Independent Study Program is one of the ways they devised to accomplish that. Available to Fellow members of the Guild, the Independent Study Program offers financial assistance, in the form of a grant, to enable further research into an area the Fellow member may not have been able to explore otherwise. The research may be connected with a specific object, technique, material or historical setting and designed to increase skills, or provide further inspiration for the member’s work.

Over the past 12 years, grants have been awarded to 12 Fellow members for proposals ranging from the study of Italian Majolica pottery and Norwegian double weave coverlets, to the use of metal clay, and the study of egg tempera techniques.

Already skilled in the creation of 1/12 mosaics, Fellow member Christina Minischetti used her grant to study the technique of filato mosaic.

Already skilled in the creation of 1/12 mosaics, Fellow member Christina Minischetti used her grant to study the technique of filato mosaic.

Following the completion of their study, the recipient returns the favor to the Guild in some way; by offering a class or a presentation at a Guild function or by donating a piece to one of the Guild’s auctions. Proposals are considered on a rolling basis throughout the year. Visit the Education page on the IGMA website for more information.

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