Modern Masters of Miniature Art in America
This book extensively covers the subject of miniature art tracing the history, etymology and miniature art societies from the earliest beginnings to the present day. Published in conjunction with the Miniature Artists of America's 25th Anniversary, the book features the work of 53 of the Society’s Signature Members from around the world with their own thoughts on miniatures and on their career. Over 210 photos of miniature art, miniaturists in their studios and exhibitions grace the pages.
Hardback, 6 x 9 inches, 268 pages, 214 color photographs
"As an introduction to the definitions and philosophies that guide contemporary miniature painters, Modern Masters is an important addition to the published histories of miniature painting in America, and a valuable record of recent developments in the five-hundred-year-old tradition of painting small independent images. A complementary section of statements prepared by individual miniaturists offers personal perspectives on the artworks and the mediums, surfaces, and techniques used to make them. Through the efforts of Wes Siegrist and the members of the MAA, a comprehensive, multi-faceted view of the modern practice of an historic art form has been achieved."
Carol Aiken, Ph.D., Portrait miniature conservator and scholar
"Erudite and highly readable, this book by Wes Siegrist is the tour de force of miniature books. Encompassing every how, why, where, when and who, it should be an essential read for all artists, collectors, scholars and lovers of fine art. It is an astounding achievement."
Carmela Arturi and Roger Frederick Phillips, Authors, miniature art collectors: www.portraitminiature.blogspot.com
"It was very interesting to read the history, much of which was new to me. … Lacking painting skill, I resorted to collecting miniature portraits. That led to my Artists and Ancestors website which displays my collection and has brought me into contact with owners of miniature portraits around the world, both collectors and those preserving miniatures of their ancestors. The website endeavours to spread knowledge of the art form and illustrate the thrills of researching artists and sitters, in effect preserving the past. I confess that portraits are my prime interest and I now get many emails on the subject, with all sorts of questions, and it being surprising how many people had never known such things existed. Those still possessing miniatures of their ancestors are universally proud of them. One sadness is that so few miniature portraits are painted of the present generation, to become cherished family heirlooms of the future. In an age of throw away consumerism, it is great to see Wes Siegrist explaining and encouraging the art form. I hope that his enthusiasm will encourage parents and others to commission new family portraits. Recently I commissioned three miniatures of my children from one of the featured artists, Irina Kouznetsova, and they are already prized family treasures."
Don Shelton, Author, miniature art collector: www.portrait-miniature.blogspot.com
Testimonials on Modern Masters of Miniature Art in America:
"On behalf of the Board of the Florida Governor's Mansion Foundation, I wish to thank you for the kind donation of the book entitled Modern Masters of Miniature Art in America, by Wes Siegrist, which you recently donated to the Florida Library. We are so pleased to have this signature publication from the Miniature Artists of America in our collection! It was such a treat to meet you, [Kay Petryszak, MAA President] your husband, and Markissia Touliatos during our recent luncheon for the portrait unveiling of First Ladies Ann Scott and Carole Crist. Thank you for all that you do to promote this outstanding art form statewide, nationally and internationally!" ~ Carol Graham Beck (Governor's Mansion Curator) in FL, USA
"This book is unlike others that I read and then set aside on the bookshelf to gather dust and be forgotten. It is a highly prized work that remains in my consciousness and nudges me to return to the section that features over 200 photos with miniaturists with an example of each ones' painting or sculpture. Every page is an educational opportunity. I have learned how others approach the execution of their new creations. Klaus Strubel sprays varnish on a pencil drawing before applying the oil paint; Rita Whitaker's mediums are stoving enamel on copper and oil on copper; Kimberly Jansen has painted watercolor and acrylics on pieces of ostrich egg shells; Charles Hargraves uses a dentist's drill bit for his exquisite scrimshaw works and several artists produce beautiful oil paintings on ivorine. These are but a few of the varieties of techniques used by artists from around the world. It inspires other artists to think beyond the ordinary and perhaps try new ways of developing a miniature.
For those who give talks on Miniature Art to art clubs and other groups, they will find that Wes Siegrist and his editorial team have compiled information that would save a speaker countless hours of research in dozens of books, museums and other venues. The first 103 pages contain all of the aspects of miniaturism from its history to framing these diminutive works. A thorough study of this accurate and valuable information would help the speaker to formulate a scholarly presentation that would spread the word of the resurgence of this historic art form, and educate the audience, promote the movement and garner an appreciation of this unique, specialized art form.
Modern Masters of Miniature Art should be on display in every home to pique the interest in miniatures and inspire all who enter there. It is a treasure, as are all the dedicated, hard working artists and historians who made it happen. My sincere thanks to all of you." ~ Evelyn Sharbaugh in PA, USA
"The Book was an enormous undertaking with amazingly fine results. You particularly mention scope in your letter and that is indeed what it has. I have always read a great deal in Art History and continue to do so. "Modern Masters" has a huge scope in the inclusions. It is likely the most inclusive book on the subject of Miniature Art so far! Artists and collectors hold much in their hands with it. The past and the present are both speaking clearly through the general text and the biographies which show varied backgrounds and ages in the membership. There is much value in young artists looking at the field as a worthy pursuit. That in itself is reason enough to consider it a valuable tool. We who are involved in the miniature surely hope it will continue into the future.
The word miniature often seems to infer less, not as important etc. than larger work. Reading this book will have to change that kind of thinking, finally! Fine Art comes in all sizes, mediums and execution and it needing saying in such an exceptional way. … Carry On, you're doing a Grand Job!!" ~ Demaris Olson in CA, USA
"I just wanted to let you know that, after gifting four "Modern Masters" books to members of my family, I received e-mails and phone calls lauding the historical significance of miniature art. Everyone loved the book and will treasure it.
I feel very proud to be included and applaud your efforts and their amazing results. Beside the group of beautifully represented artists, the history of miniature art was most educational and thorough. It was fascinating reading for me as well even though I am, of course, somewhat familiar with the history on the subject.
You and all the other volunteers did a tremendous job and I can only add that your aim was achieved. I am thrilled to have this book in my art library. Thank you, Wes, for a wonderful job." ~ John M. Angelini in FL, USA
"When I first received Modern Masters of Miniature Art in America, I wrote a thank you for all the time, thought, and energy you put into writing, researching, and publishing it. Now, having read and savored it, I must write to tell you what a profoundly important book this is to me. Prior to reading it, I knew nothing about the history or traditions of miniature art. I had never met another miniature artist. The awareness and understanding of this art form and the wonderful collection of quotes are tremendous gifts. The section of the book with images of the artists in their studios with their works of art and an essay in their own words was a communication I had longed for. Their expressions of joy, philosophy, inspiration, passion, technique, and problem solving offered a wealth of insights and wisdom. … Thank you for having the determination, wisdom, vision, and insight to create this most important book." ~ Sue Wall in NY, USA
"I am so delighted with the MAA book!!! I can't imagine how many hours were spent on its' creation but the quality of the result is outstanding. Thank you [Wes] and your assistants for making me so proud to be a part of it." ~ Gail MacArgel in MO, USA
"This book is a wonderful addition to the modern miniaturist's library. In addition to technique and history, the reader is treated to biographies of 21st century miniature artists in a successful presentation of miniature fine art - then and now. Modern Masters continues what Sue Burton started." ~ Debra Keirce in VA, USA
"To Wes and the gang who worked so hard on the Masters of Modern Miniatures my everlasting thanks!!! Words can not express my appreciation for the great amount of effort and thought that Wes put into creating this wonderful tome. I have just finished reading through the first part of the book and it took several hours. It is extremely well written and thoughtfully assembled. Lots of food for thought! My husband downloaded it to the computer last night. I will be reading over the individual artists histories with great interest. I plan to buy a number of hard copies to give as gifts. I am looking forward to seeing what this book accomplishes for the field of miniature art in the coming years. It is my opinion that there is a greater number of artists creating great miniatures than at any period in the history of the world. I realize there are more people in the world and we have better access to create but I also feel man is reaching out to something more than machines and there is a bright future. Thanks again Wes!" ~ Bev Abbott in VA, USA
The Author and the Miniature Artists of America Society welcome your testimonials and endorsements. Please send comments to Wes Siegrist at firstname.lastname@example.org
Charter Member of the World Federation of Miniaturists