Particle physics art

Micro-bird art sculptures are smaller than a pinhead

The sharp tip of a pencil is small, but the work of French artist Marie Cohydon is smaller. She offers a side-by-side comparison of her sculpted bird sculptures, and the tiny scale, coupled with the incredible detail, is awe-inspiring. Cohydon does things that seem impossible at a size barely bigger than a pinhead; a toucan opens its mouth, for example, and a bird spreads its articulated wings.

Before creating his sculptures, the artist worked in an area that also operates on a small scale: the design of contemporary jewelry. “I really started to sculpt in miniature on jeweler’s wax, then quite naturally I used a microscope to see the details better and glue my subjects,” she tells My Modern Met. “From there, I discovered the possibilities of sculpture in the infinitely small.

The size of Cohydon’s work is influenced by the way the artist views the world. When she looks at an insect, she is amazed by its fragility – it is so small – but also by its resilience. She also acknowledges that for the bug, humans are inconceivably tall. “Maybe I wanted to see what it’s like to be the giant,” she muses.

“To be [working] to the millimeter, it means being in another dimension: accepting to be in the storm of tremors (heart, hands) and tornado (imperceptible breath of air on the dust). Physical, materials no longer behave in the same way at this scale, everything cracks, or breaks clean, everything flies when you cut, or when you try to assemble. Making and remaking, twig after twig, little by little, the bird makes its nest, such is the universe of the microsculptor.

Scroll down to see details of Cohydon’s work taken with a special magnifying glass. For reference, the graphite of the pencil is five millimeters high and 2 millimeters wide.

Artist Marie Cohydon carves incredibly small bird sculptures that have incredible detail on a microscopic scale.

Illustration of birds by Marie CohydonMicro Sculpture by Marie CohydonMicro Sculpture by Marie CohydonIllustration of birds by Marie CohydonIllustration of birds by Marie CohydonSmall bird sculptures by Marie CohydonSmall bird sculptures by Marie CohydonSmall bird sculptures by Marie CohydonMicro Sculpture by Marie CohydonSmall bird sculptures by Marie CohydonMicro Sculpture by Marie CohydonIllustration of birds by Marie Cohydon

Marie Cohydon: Website

My Modern Met has granted permission to present photos of Marie Cohydon.

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