World's smallest sculpture no bigger than ant's head accidentally crushed by photographer

Jonty Hurwitz's miniature artwork was destroyed by a lab technician's finger

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The Independent Culture

One of the world’s smallest sculptures has been accidentally crushed by a photographer’s finger, leaving the artist who created it shocked.

Jonty Hurwitz, from Hampshire, uses a high-tech process called nano-painting to craft detailed representations of the human form in miniature.

Some of his pieces are just 100 microns tall and so tiny that they cannot be seen by the human eye without a microscope.

Some are small enough to fit inside the eye of a needle, while others can be balanced on a single human hair. It was one of these fragile artworks, 'Trust', that is sadly no longer with us.


“I went off to have the original sculpture photographed so I found a laboratory with an electron microscope and the photographic technology,” Hurwitz told the Daily Mail.

“The technician went to change the orientation and then for the next half an hour we were looking for the piece through the lens.

“Eventually I noticed there was a fingerprint exactly where the sculpture used to be and I was like ‘Man, you have just destroyed one of the smallest art pieces ever made’. I slightly freaked out.”

It had taken Hurwitz a year to make the sculpture. He will appear in CNN Ones to Watch this coming Saturday 14 March at 7.30pm on CNN International.