Silver City in Miniature 9 – Freestanding sculpture


A miniature cityscape along a river. The ‘buildings’ are made from unusual and unidentifiable rectangular bits of metal, except for the one that once surrounded a pencil eraser. A ‘river’ is a piece of narrow flat metal that was already bent into a flowing river shape. And the ‘moon’ up above? Perhaps part of a snap or other fastener? Regardless of what these bits once were, they are now a unique gift of art for a young girl or boy to enjoy.

This freestanding miniature cityscape (4x7x4cm) is called Silver City in Miniature 9. I created it on a black block of wood that I picked upfound near a house renovation in Canberra. I used rectangular pieces of metal for buildings, a twisted piece of flat metal for a river, and half a large snap for the moon. All of these bits and bobs I gathered from the streets of Melbourne during my daily walks.

My name is Nancy D Lane. I am a found object assemblage artist and jewellery designer working as NancyDee Sculptures. Normally I create larger wall sculptures or 3D sculptures from the metal, wood, tiles and plastic that I pick up off the streets. However, from being an aunty and a grandmother, I have found that girls from about 8-years-old to their early teens love having a tiny city like this setting on their windowsill or on a shelf above their bed.

Many of my works are inspired by the Melbourne skyline, especially at sunrise and sunset. Often I try to incorporate ‘natural features’ – in this case, a bent piece of metal that suggests a meandering river. In other works, I may use rusted sheet metal that transforms into a cloud, or a broken tile that becomes a mountain.

My more abstract works are stimulated by the found objects themselves, which I often place in juxtaposition. At other times, I emphasise their rusted, scratched or variegated surfaces.

My art is inspired by a strong interest in sustainability through repurposing and upcycling. My hope is that my works make you smile, and at the same time, remind you of the 5Rs to help our planet: refuse, reduce, reuse, repurpose and recycle.