Imagine that your job was to play with food and toys. Paris-based artists Pierre Javelle and Akiko Ida make a living doing just that. In 2002, the husband-wife team invented Minimiam, a man-made micro universe, where miniature figurines perform ordinary activities amidst a combination of sweet and savory landscapes. Since then, the concept has given way to an amusing series of diptych photographs that are as pleasing to the eye as they are to the pallette.
Through Minimiam, Javelle and Ida have melded multiple genres of photography, including micro-photography, culinary art, portraiture and landscape. In each diptych, the first panel introduces surprisingly expressive figurines in a close-up setting, while the second panel reveals a playful scene in its totality.
Whether you prefer a burly man lifting a pea-encrusted barbel, a biker treking up the mountainous terrain of a scone, or a penguin diving off of the slick surface of a marshmellow, one glance at Javelle and Ida’s light-hearted images will transport you back to the simpler days of your childhood. And let’s face it. In the throes of this deep recession, is there anything that could sound more appealing?
The most recent Minimiam exhibit, which took place at the Madelyn Jordon Fine Art Gallery, has unfortunately long-passed. But if the past seven years can be any indication, there is no question that Javelle and Ida have many more miniatures up their sleeves, or their mushooms.