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A Small World Filled With Big Ideas

Updated: Feb 12, 2020

Chisel & Mouse celebrate the beauty of our industrialised world, combining an artisan’s approach with modern innovation and transformative technologies, capturing life and its big ideas in miniature.

Buildings and cityscapes have captured the human imagination for millennia. Urban landscapes, with their heady mix of architecture, thoroughfares and parks, chart the course of history. They describe the ideals, visions and aspirations of numerous individuals, in a small world filled with big ideas.

Pulsing and ever growing, cities and their buildings are like living organisms, providing places of refuge, recreation, employment, learning and more. As curious beings, we explore, admire and enjoy the varied pleasures that cities have to offer. In architecture, for instance, we find a physical and emotional manifestation of an art form, and are typically moved to ponder and reflect its meaning. Indeed, we are fascinated by architecture, so much so that we display examples of great buildings and cities in our homes, schools and offices—as graphic prints and scale models.

Artisan and Innovator

Chisel & Mouse is the combination of an artisan’s approach (the chisel) with modern innovation and transformative technologies (the mouse). By capturing life and its big ideas in miniature, the brand celebrates the beauty of our industrialised world.

To make a scale model of a building or cityscape requires dexterity, artistry, a keen eye for detail and patience. At Chisel & Mouse, brothers Robert and Gavin Paisley have been casting and handcrafting exact physical representations of architectural landmarks and cityscapes since 2011. Every piece is a finely balanced sculpture and a remarkably faithful impression of an iconic building or world city. Robert and Gavin strive to communicate and depict works that are aesthetically pleasing, thorough and honest in their presentation.

A Punctilious Edit

The sculptures made by Chisel & Mouse are perfect when seeking something (perhaps a gift) that is individual and unexpected. What’s more, they are greatly appreciated and admired by design aficionados and novices alike.

The brand’s punctilious edit of famous buildings includes the modernist Bauhaus Dessau by Walter Gropius, the brutalist Trellick Tower by Erno Goldfinger, and the art nouveau Helsinki Central Station by Gottlieb Eliel Saarinen. A number of limited-edition models and miniature minis complete the handmade (signed and dated) collection.

New additions include the acclaimed modern mid-century classic Farnsworth House, two stunning Nicholas Hawksmoor London Churches and three classic architectural models by François Fouquet from the Sir John Soane’s Museum collection.

Farnsworth House is one of the most revered works of German-born architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. The Chisel & Mouse reproduction captures and depicts the structure, make-up and modernist character of Mies’s architectural gem. One can even imagine the house in its natural, riverside setting.

The Chisel & Mouse models of Christ Church and St Mary Woolnoth are the brand’s most complex pieces to date. In presenting the striking front elevation of each church, the models successfully capture the essence of Nicholas Hawksmoor’s imaginative English Baroque style.

A homage to one of Robert and Gavin Paisley’s favourite architects, the Christ Church and St Mary Woolnoth models were a labour of love—it took the brothers a year to perfect the first model. Similar to the eye-catching church structures they embody, the models are thrilling and artistic statement pieces to behold.

The Sir John Soane’s Museum has asked Chisel & Mouse to make replicas of their model building collection as part of an ongoing project, starting with three architectural models by François Fouquet, a French master model maker. The chosen models are: Monument at Mylasa, Monument at Palmyra and Temple of Artemis the Huntress.


For Chisel & Mouse, cities are a model makers goldmine, offering a fascinating opportunity to explore and capture the urban landscape in three-dimensional form. With the brand’s cityscapes, Chisel & Mouse are crafting an artistic representation of the physical geography of a city, capturing in faithful detail its architecture, thoroughfares, parks and waterways.

To produce its cityscapes, Chisel & Mouse use satellite data to create a digital model. With this model, a 3D printed version of the built environment is made; combined with traditional moulding and plaster casting, the digital–—and made cityscape is crafted. Accurate to the nearest metre, cityscapes are scaled at 1:5000 and capture an area of 1.5 m x .5 m. In its Classic Series, Chisel & Mouse have made nine precise cityscape models, including the City of London, Manhattan’s southern tip and the area around Venice’s Canal Grande. Each model measures 0 m x 0 m and is enclosed in a removable perspex frame.

There are two additional variations of the cityscape series made by Chisel & Mouse: the Blue River Series is similar to the Classic Series, but with the addition of a brilliant blue hue to highlight each city’s waterways; the Large Cityscape Series includes larger models of London (at a scale of 1:2500) and New York (at a scale of 1:5000)—each model is made in resin, measures 0 m x 0 m and is displayed in a wooden frame.

Finally, a bespoke service from Chisel & Mouse is the perfect solution for people who desire architectural models of a celebrated building, a private residence or a much loved city.

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