Cine-Mini: Isn’t this tiny Cinerama Dome adorable?

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Once upon a time if you opened a bank account on the right day or visited the gift shop of some historic site, you might come home with a souvenir miniature building. The Statue of Liberty and Independence Hall in Philadelphia were popular subjects in the late 19th century. The little metal replicas are pretty rare these days, but a company called InFocus Tech is keeping the tradition around using 21st century technology: think CAD and rapid prototyping machines. There are more than 800 structures in their catalog, including a good number from Los Angeles. Of course they did City Hall and the Chinese Theatre, but I was super impressed with unusual stuff like the Brown Derby, the Watts Towers, and Johnie’s Coffee Shop at Wilshire and Fairfax. Nice work! The inch-high Cinerama Dome is probably my favorite, and I like that it comes in black, brown, blue, or green. I was going to complain that it was a little pricey at $90, but that’s about what it would cost for a family of 4 to see a 3-D movie at the Arclight Cinemas there, so maybe it’s a deal. Be sure to check out their version of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Ennis House. You can almost count each of the 27,000 textile blocks used in its construction.

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