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Regarded as a wellspring of the modernist movement, the Bauhaus Dessau designed by Walter Gropius in 1925 seems a natural for Chisel & Mouse’s superb architectural model series. Shaping much of 20th-century design, the school exhibited forceful lines and the movement’s characteristic logo. Brit brothers Robert and Gavin Paisley painstakingly reproduce the iconic design in resin plaster (free of toxic solvents) of a reassuring weight and cool smoothness, with fine details including window frames etched in metal. In their Sussex studio, the “Chisel” refers to traditional plaster-cast methods and the “Mouse” to the computer-aided design (CAD) technology and 3-D printing used to achieve the sculptural models. An exceptional gift, in a striking black presentation box with a history of the building.
CHISEL + MOUSE
“We wouldn’t presume to think of ourselves as artists,” Robert Paisley says. “We call ourselves draftsmen; the architect is the artist.” A bit of an understatement for Robert and brother Gavin, who fled an office-software business for their creative venture Chisel & Mouse. With both traditional plaster-cast methods (the “Chisel”) and today’s 3-D printing and computer-aided design (“Mouse”), not to mention Google Earth and satellite data, they turn out painstakingly accurate architectural models. The smooth white plaster replicas of such landmarks as the Bauhaus Dessau and New York’s Guggenheim Museum are stylish and also quite personal, adds Robert. “I love the idea of immortalizing a place that’s special to people.”