New Jersey-based artist Matthew Albanese creates astonishingly detailed small-scale miniatures landscapes out of ordinary household items such as spices, cotton, colored paper, ink and glasses. He then photographs them using forced perspective techniques to create stunning landscapes you wouldn’t believe if I tell you were created in his living room. From grassy fields, to tornadoes and volcanoes - Matthew Albanese has done it all.
In the artist’s own words:
My work involves the construction of small-scale meticulously detailed models using various materials and objects to create emotive landscapes. Every aspect from the construction to the lighting of the final model is painstakingly pre-planned using methods which force the viewers perspective when photographed from a specific angle. Using a mixture of photographic techniques such as scale, depth of field, white balance and lighting I am able to drastically alter the appearance of my materials.
Diorama made from wood, moss, yellow glitter, clear garbage bags, cooked sugar, scotch-brite pot scrubbers, bottle brushes, clipping from a bush in bloom (white flowers) clear thread, sand, tile grout (coloring), wire, paper and alternating yellow, red and orange party bulbs.
"DIY Paradise". Created using cotton, salt, cooked sugar, tin foil, feathers & canvas.
Ingredients: 25 pounds of sugar cooked at varying temperatures (hard crack & pulled sugar recipes) It's basically made out of candy. salt, egg whites, corn syrup, cream of tartar, powdered sugar, blue food coloring, India ink & flour.
"Everything We Ever Were" It took two months to store up enough fireplace ash to create this lunar landscape. The darker rocks are made of mixed tile grout, flag crumpled paper & wire. The Earth is a video still projected onto the wall. Inspired by the Apollo 11 mission.
Tornado made of steel wool, cotton, ground parsley and moss
Paprika Mars. Made out of 12 pounds paprika, cinnamon, nutmeg, chili powder and charcoal
"Breaking Point", made out of tile grout, cotton, phosphorous ink. This model volcano was illuminated from within by 6-60 watt light bulbs.
This one was made by photographing a beam of colored light against a black curtain to achieve the edge effect. The trees were composited from life ( so far the only real life element in any of these images) The stars are simply strobe light through holes in cork board.
After the Storm
The field landscape is made out of faux fur for the field, cotton for the clouds and sifted tile grout for the mountains. Shifting the white balance created the lighting effect.