“There’s an old saying – just because you can’t see something doesn’t mean it’s not there,” says micro-artist Willard Wigan in a TED Talk from August of 2009. Wigan is the subject of a video that has been on YouTube for two years but has gone viral in bursts over the last few months. Wigan can carve a sculpture from a fragment of a grain of sand, paint it using a hair plucked from a house fly’s back and fit it on the head of a pin or in the eye of a needle. It’s almost too crazy to believe, but it’s real and it’s incredible.
Wigan says that making the sculptures “is misery”, but he thrives on the satisfaction he gets from other people’s amazement. And he certainly gets paid well for his endeavors. His sculpture of an elephant on the head of a pin is worth $300,000 and at the time this video was recorded Wigan had just sold his life’s work to a collector for $20 million.
This extraordinary artist got his start at a young age making houses for ants. He was looking for a way to express himself because he can’t read or write. He says that the teachers at school made him feel small, like nothing, and he wanted to prove that nothing didn’t exist. I think he’s done a fine job at that. Check out the video below and let us know what you think in the comments. Pretty amazing, right?