DIORAMA |dīəˈramə| 1. a model representing a scene with three-dimensional figures, either in miniature or as a large-scale museum exhibit. A diorama can be described as a mini-world. An entire landscape in a box, carry case, or window. You can create your own little world of model figures that can appear as a freeze frame of a historic event or anything else you want to create. The word diorama can either refer to a nineteenth century mobile theatre device, or, in modern usage, a three-dimensional full-size or miniature model, sometimes enclosed in a glass showcase for a museum. Thanks so much Sarah R for suggesting this entry and improving the dictionary with your info!
//2. amazing dioramas: nutshell studies of unexplained death Frances Glessner Lee (March 25, 1878 – 1962) was a millionaire heiress who revolutionized the study of crime scene investigation with her detailed crime scenes dioramas. Frances loved Sherlock Holmes's stories because of their twists, which often result from overlooked details and her work was inspired by a classmate of her brother, George Burgess Magrath, who was just getting his MD from Harvard Medical School and was particularly interested in death investigation. She founded Harvard's department of legal medicine, the first program in the nation for forensic pathology.
Through the 1940s and 1950s, Frances hosted a series of semi-annual "Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death." Thirty leading crime scene investigators would be invited to a week-long conference, where she would present them with an intricately constructed diorama (one-inch-to-one-foot scale and cost her up to $3000) of actual crime scenes, she knitted the doll’s clothing, installed working lights and windows, placed tiny canned goods in the kitchen and miniature newspapers on the coffee tables, her half-inch pencils really wrote, and her little sinks were littered with itsy potato peel. They would have 90 minutes to study the scene. The week culminated in a banquet at the Ritz Carlton. Her 18 dioramas are still used for training purposes by Harvard Associates in Police Science.
Legendary filmmaker, actor, author, and true crime aficionado, John Waters, is the narrator of this highly recommended documentary "Of Dolls &Murder". Check "A Crime Scene Dollhouse Documentary" for a better understanding of this interesting film.
On the right, a detail of Frances Glessner Lee diorama: Hanged man
//3. Ryan Gosling's diorama -according to Squire magazine Aug 2011- In August 2011, Squire magazine published an indepth interview with Ryan Gosling by Tom Chiarella. The journalist had purchased a notebook at a local store where he had written six questions he wanted Ryan Gosling to answer. Instead, Mr Gosling gave Chiarella an interactive project he made as a way to battle his inner childhood fears. Tom writes about it in his article:
"The key to everything is the notebook. Purchased at Target, bearing a mere six questions for Ryan Gosling, an unfinished list carried on what was scheduled as a two-hour interview but is slowly becoming a long day's journey into night. "What's with the skeletons?" being the best question of them all. There are also sketches of skeletons in the notebook, vodka-driven, drawn on my plane ride out — I had heard about his conversations with our photographer, and so I drew skeletons. Two pages. That's it. At Coney, Ryan Gosling takes the notebook. He says he will answer the questions ... He did answer these questions, in his way, turning the notebook into an interactive art project."
On the left, Ryan Gosling's diorama
10:37 p.m. Panna II restaurant, back in Manhattan (Indian food)
Under a heavy sea of Christmas lights at an Indian restaurant, Ryan Gosling tells the story of his childhood experience with the supernatural. It isn't spooky, and he tells it in a heavily boiled-down manner, without a hint of flourish.
When he was young, very young, like four, living with his family in Cornwall, Ontario, he thought he saw an old man in his house:
"He just sat. And I knew from a very young age that he was a ghost, too. He scared me. I told my mother, but she couldn't see him. Nobody could. And I learned to live with that. I had to. Then, a few years later, she thought she saw him, then almost right away my cousin saw him, and then my uncle. And we were outta there in fairly short order. So my mom said she saw the ghost, but she was also obsessed with Zelda and Lord of the Rings, so you have to take that with a grain of salt. I don't believe I saw a ghost. I don't believe my house was haunted. I think I had an overactive imagination and I was so convinced that those around me became convinced, too. I don't believe in ghosts."
On the right, below, Ryan Gosling and his building crew, from Tom Chiarella's facebook
After their time together, Ryan Gosling gave Tom Chiarella a present: this homemade diorama, which, when you look into it, is a representation of his childhood home, which was haunted.
1. When you plug in the box, a string of Christmas lights illuminates the inside, revealing a haunted house, a cemetery, and even a small tree.
2. Gosling included an unlabeled CD and the instruction "Play." It's an obscure album called Ghetto Reality, recorded in 1969 by a Rochester, New York, elementary-school teacher, Nancy Dupree, and her music students.
3. Questions ("Are you aware of being looked at?" "What is it with you and bones?") and drawings Gosling cut out of Chiarella's notebook.
4. Matches, a strike board, and cigarettes, which are used to cover the scene inside in a smoky haze.
5. Always practical (and safe!), Gosling wrote a warning on the back of the box: "Do not leave plugged in."
In his facebook, Tom Chiarella has a gallery where you can check the inside of Ryan's diorama and the building crew.