You’ve seen them all over the city (and your instagram feed). Now, Karen Anderson Singer, the artist behind Tiny Doors ATL, gives us a peek behind the door of her new Atlantic Station Studio to reveal her inspiration, process and where she’s headed next.
Tiny Door 18 at Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.
How did the idea of Tiny Doors ATL come about?
As a kid, I always had a love of creating miniatures and gave away my dollhouse furniture in order to make my own. After graduating from art school in 2013, I moved to the Reynoldstown neighborhood in Atlanta and was inspired by the compelling and abundant street art, including the Krog Street Tunnel. In my hometown of Ann Arbor, Mich., there are fairy doors, and I was fascinated by the idea of creating miniature street art, but using the surrounding community as inspiration.
What do the Tiny Doors represent to you?
Tiny Doors ATL is a public art love letter to Atlanta. To me, they represent an opportunity to pause your day as usual and experience a moment of wonder. One of my favorite things to hear from folks I meet around town is that they bring their visiting friends and family to find the doors. More than about doors or miniatures, these installations are about imagination and connection.
Karen Anderson Singer in her brand-new Atlantic Station studio
How do you choose the location of each Tiny Door?
The doors are installed by invitation only, but they never go to the highest bidder. Instead, they are installed in places that are significant to Atlanta, at iconic institutions or in neighborhoods you might not otherwise visit. All of the numbered doors are free, public and wheelchair accessible. Each door is designed to reflect and highlight what makes its environment unique. I spend up to a year getting to know the architecture, colors and, most importantly, the spirit of the surrounding neighborhood. By reflecting and embracing what’s already there, I can create art that is a canvas for the imagination of visitors.
You recently opened the Tiny Doors ATL studio in Atlantic Station. What can ATLiens expect to find there?
I’m so excited to be the artist-in-residence at Atlantic Station through 2022! I have been here since April and it has been great getting to know the neighborhood. Although I’m not able to hold open studio dates yet due to COVID, my windows are always full of tiny scenes and there’s a new Tiny Door just a block away! The new door, Tiny Door 21, features a 3D skyline of Atlanta and is in the new green space where there’s room to relax and play. If you haven’t visited recently, I recommend stopping by!
Where do you see Tiny Doors ATL going next—both figuratively and literally?
Next year I hope to open the doors to the Tiny Studio in Atlantic Station to visitors, and host events to connect with the community. I also just finished writing a children’s book about the doors that I’m really excited to debut next fall!
I am currently accepting commissions for 2021 with corporate and private clients. One of the things I enjoy most is working with clients to invent new ways for art to interact with their audience (like the mailable tiny vacations we recently sent to employees working from home). Most of all, I’m looking forward to finding new ways to use art to help people feel connected in this changing world.
Tiny Door 2 on the Atlanta BeltLine
Tiny Door 21 at Atlantic Station.
Photography by: All Photos courtesy of tiny doors atl