The toy sledge in Antarctica with the real gold ppicture frame sledge in the distance
Detail of the 1 cm TV set showing the real gold picture frame sledge in the Antarctic and setting up camp
The accessories unloaded toy sledge with some extra's added, A camera (from a dolls house), a second figure and televison set
Installed in the gallery the painting is on top of a pile of real sledge boxes arranged the same as the ones in the model. The yellow box is for sitting on.
The extra figure I found to add to the toy sledge (the one watching the TV) was painted to represent 'Fergal Buckley', my 'field assistant' in his distinctive grey hat.
This was a great toy made by Herald Toys and Models. All the things on the sledge were based on an the real supplies needed on an old fashioned dog sledge and they were all detachable. I think it was made in the early 1960s late 50's and based on a similar design of sledge that my gold picture frame one was based on.
The viewer adopts the same position as the model figure in the painting also sitting on a yellow box. There is a magnifying glass in the yellow box if necessary
The toy sledge had a collection of model sledge boxes on it that I arranged to mirror the same pile of real boxes that it was standing on.
The TV has a 1cm square screen so that it is the same scale as the toy. The tv is playing footage of the "real" sledge. Another addition I made to this toy was an old fashioned camera from a dolls house. One of the figures is taking a photo of himself using his whip as a remote control device. When Scott reached the south Pole his team did a similar thing to obtain a full team photo. In Antarctica I often found it difficult to resist taking pictues of myself that didn't convey anything more than ...."look at where I am!". In the famous image of Scott's team at the Pole, Henry R. Bowers (front row left) can just be seen pulling on a piece of string with his right hand. Arguably the photo becomes a very formal and rather sombre group 'selfie'.
To watch the TV you have to look between the two figures. This is deliberate as the tv is actually a reflection of a real TV beneath built into the crates in. If the angle of the viewer changes the image doesnt line up. You have to look between the two figures to make sure you are viewing directly 90 degrees onto the image.
Scott's team photo at the South pole. Henry R. Bowers (front row left) is pulling on a piece of string to work the camera.