cs      Presents...
Dioramas
 

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A Diorama is a scale model, representing a scene with three-dimensional models and figures,
either in miniature or as a large-scale museum exhibit.
Dioramas have become my favorite
means to express my ideas in 3 dimensions.

        "Il Presepio” (Presepe, pl) - is a classic Italian Christmas Nativity scene, consisting of hand
crafted
miniature figures and animals in a realistic setting; a diorama. This Italian tradition dates all
the way back to St. Francis of Assisi, who commissioned the first Presepio in the 13th century.


        I see myself as a direct decedent of this tradition of Italian craftsmen, carrying on the building of
miniature dioramas, although not using a religious theme. My dioramas usually depict the early
20th Century, and the theme is Industrial, focusing on the daily lives of everyday workers and
their surroundings.     Below is some of my recent work...


 
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The Ogre Takes an Evening Ride

        An old country Ogre urges his faithful Wild Boar to move along, as he takes his pet raven for a ride on the cart. This fantasy diorama is totally hand-made, from polymer clay, wood, brass, plastic, Tibetan lamb's wool, leather, paintbrush bristles, and an old washcloth. That makes it truly a multimedia piece. It is about 16" long, and 10" high. The boar was inspired by the movie "Beasts of The Southern Wild" (great flick). The pet raven was made from polymer clay, with paper feathers. The base has real dirt and gravel, with carved plaster stone wall,
made one-stone-at-a-time. Created 2017

of1

of7  of3

of4  of5

of6

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Vespa Repair Shop

In this Diorama the focus is on the details of the models. Vinnie, an amateur outdoor mechanic,
works on tuning a customer's scooter, while the owner looks on.

It is based on an inexpensive die-cast toy scooter, which was stripped of paint, disassembled,
and then rebuilt and detailed, especially the engine. The figures are my own sculptures, and
some of the hand tools are commercial items. I also added lots
of details from other scooter models
I had, piled in the back corner, near the workbench. This diorama garnered a lot of "Wow"
comments at a recent Art Show. Built July, 2017

sc1

sc2   sc1

sc4   sc5


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ERIS, A Steampunk Airship

This is a "flying diorama'! It is an Airship, run by Gnomes, designed and built in a "Steampunk"
style. It is about 21" long by 14" wide, and was made from wood, brass, plastic, wire, string, muslin,
and many other bits. It can be set on it's landing gear, or hung from a thin fishing line.
I built it in 2019.

e1

e2  e3


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La Strada, Senza Uscita
(Dead-End Street)

This is an Italian street scene, set in a "low-income" area, perhaps in 1950's Naples. A serious
game of checkers is the focus here. It is being watched by "Nonna" (grandma) on her balcony.
Otto watches leaning against the street light.

1" scale, about 16"W X 12" D. Street Lights and building are lighted. Made from Styrofoam, plastic,
brass, wire, etc. Figures sculpted by me. Balcony railing and lights made by Antonio
Malacario in Naples.  I recently disassembled it and used many parts to create other new dioramas. 

Built 2015-16, disassembled in 2019.

st1  

st1   st5

st1   st4

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   Vieni Ora  (Come along, now)

In this Diorama, a young woman is trying to coax a donkey along by offering a carrot. The donkey is tired, carrying sticks, potatoes, lemons and other goods to market. For a long time, I've wanted to sculpt a donkey in 1/12 scale. I also sculpted the woman to match, and set them on a simple base.

Created, 2019

donkey1

donkey2


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Il Caffe - Bar

 
This Diorama shows a scene in an Italian Coffee Bar in the 1920's. The Espresso Machine is a vintage model, and the figure sitting on the right is a portrait of my father, Pasquale. Most of the diorama was made by me, but a few things (cups, saucers, stove) were made from kits. The scale (as are most of my dioramas) is 1" per foot.  Built, 2015

bar1  

bar2

bar3   bar4

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The Courier

This diorama was inspired by a sketch from Ian McCue, a concept artist. It depicts a future time and place , including levitating versions of vehicles. The model again started with a toy scooter, with a new jet engine
and a custom-sculpted driver.  1/12 Scale.   Built, 2016

m1   m2  

m3   m4

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