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Charles LeDray

b. 1960

Charles LeDray, Untitled/Clothesline, 1992. Fabric and buttons, 82 1/4 × 4 × 2 in. (208.9 × 10.2 × 5.1 cm). Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Jack E. Chachkes Bequest  95.141
Charles LeDray makes sculptures that are re-creations of objects such as stuffed animals, clothing, books, and ceramic pots. LeDray changes the size and scale of the objects that he creates, making them in miniature. Because he makes every piece by hand, LeDray’s work takes a long time to produce—sometimes months or years! Although the human figure is nowhere to be found in his work, LeDray’s objects relate closely to the human body. By re-creating familiar, personal items in a much smaller size, LeDray changes our relationship to them and makes us more aware of our own bodies and how we interact with these items. Untitled/Clothesline (1992) is a row of miniature handmade clothes, complete with details including cuffs, collars, pockets, and buttons.
MORE WORK BY Charles LeDray
About the artist
When he was four years old, Charles LeDray’s mother taught him how to sew. LeDray first made teddy bears, and he has been sewing ever since. He also drew and painted as a child, but always returned to making sculptural objects because he was fascinated by changing one thing into another.
Embroidery floss


In the mid-1980s, Charles LeDray worked as a guard at the Seattle Art Museum, where he spent time with works of art from all over the world, such as African masks, Southeast Asian jewelry and textiles, and cups made of rhinoceros horn. After work, he would leave the museum excited to make something of his own. LeDray’s work is also inspired by objects with a history. The objects might be precious, like those in a museum, or ordinary, like those you might find in a thrift store or on the street.

Charles LeDray, Milk and Honey, 1994–96  96.75a-b


All of the objects in Charles LeDray’s work are handmade by the artist. He creates miniature pots on a pottery wheel and stitches together tiny suits, shirts, underwear, hats, coats, and other clothing. He even makes the buttons, cuffs, and collars. Each object requires expert craftsmanship as well as careful attention to detail. 

LeDray’s WORKS