Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 30 July 2014

Artist makes tiny trinute to Obama family

This undated image provided by UKFineArts Tuesday Jan. 20 2009, shows a micro sculpture by Willard Wigan showing U.S, President elect Barrack Obama and his family in the eye of a needle. Barack Obama will be inaugurated as the 44th U.S. president in Washington on Tuesday. (AP Photo/ UKFineArts,HO) ** NO SALES EDITORIAL USE ONLY **
Bundled people pack the National Mall for the inauguration of President-elect Barack Obama in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2009. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

A microscopic sculpture of Barack Obama and his family has been made to commemorate his inauguration as US President.

Artist Willard Wigan spent seven weeks making the figures, which are smaller than a full stop on a newspaper and fit into the eye of a specially-made gold needle.

Mr Wigan, 51, from Birmingham, said he wanted to create "the smallest tribute possible" to commemorate the "massive occasion" of the inauguration of America's first black president.

The sculpture features Obama, his wife Michelle, and their daughters, Malia and Sasha, holding hands.

The figures were made from a microscopic piece of hard nylon and painted using a hair from a dead fly.

Mr Wigan used one of his own eyelashes to position the figures on the needle and worked in between heartbeats to avoid making mistakes.

A broken shard of diamond was also used to make the figures.

Mr Wigan said: "It's something I never thought would happen in my lifetime.

"I thought I would do the smallest biggest tribute to mark the occasion.

"This occasion is massive so I decided to do the smallest tribute possible."

The artist, who has been awarded an MBE, said he would love his work to be displayed at the White House and added that Obama would be "knocked unconscious" if he saw the sculpture.

Mr Wigan has been creating tiny pieces of art for 46 years - his work includes sculptures of The Wizard of Oz characters in the eye of a needle and Elvis on a pinhead.

"It's the most punishing work in the world," said Mr Wigan, who began his fascination with small art at the age of five when he created an adventure playground for ants in his parent's garden.

"I've got better over the years but you've not seen the best of me yet."

Mr Wigan is hoping to sell the Obama piece and is open for offers.

Limited edition prints of the sculpture are also for sale at

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting?

Latest News

Latest Sport

Latest Showbiz