Given its reputation as a “crossroads of the world”, it is only fitting that Times Square is the home of Gulliver’s Gate, “the biggest little world in the world”. In direct contrast to the neighborhood’s oversized ads and puffy billboards, Gulliver’s Gate is a complex world of miniatures, imagined by a team of over 100 artists from around the world.
The $ 40 million, 49,000 square foot exhibit spans an entire city block and features 300 miniature scenes from 50 countries – from the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Rome to the Big Ben in London and the Brooklyn Bridge in New York.
Everything you see is presented in a 1:87 scale: 10,000 cars, 1,000 trains and an ever-increasing number of miniature figures dot the displays, each with their own unique character.
“The model makers have been tasked with creating a world that best represents how they see the region they come from,” said co-founder Michael Langer in United States today. “They also had a great deal of leeway to convey their own personality and humor to the show.”
Eiran Gazit, artist and retired IDF major, led the project, which continues to grow throughout its smooth opening; over time, additional scenes and interactive elements will be added.
The miniature New York model was made in Brooklyn by 16 model makers, who decided to incorporate iconic landmarks like Grand Central Terminal, the World Trade Center transit hub of Santiago Calatrava, and the Statue of Liberty. The city’s skyline is reinvented with light towers that project upwards; in total, the entire model took 358 days to create. The team worked with architectural firm Beyer Blinder Belle, model train companies Walthers and Faller, Brooklyn Model Works and others for this feat.
Another interactive part of the exhibit is the Cobra 3D scanner which allows visitors to create miniature versions of themselves. One of three existing, the body scanner and 3D printer use 128 Canon digital SLR cameras to capture 360-degree images of visitors, which are transformed into tiny models that can be taken home as keepsakes or placed. as “model citizens” of Gulliver’s Door.
Gulliver’s Gate (30th, 216 W 44th St.) is now on view until December 30. For more information and visiting hours, click here.
Next, see an architect’s model of Grand Central Terminal made entirely from LEGO bricks and Gulliver’s Gate, a miniature world of New York and other cities coming to Times Square.