UCL Anthropology


Jack Davy

Email: j.davy@ucl.ac.uk
Year of start:
Material Culture

Research Topic/ Provisional Dissertation Title

Miniaturisation: A study of a material culture practice among the indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest


Dr Ludovic Coupaye
Dr Jago Cooper (British Museum)


My PhD is a study of miniaturisation as a technical process which permits non-verbal communication of ideology and other intangible messages. The case study areas are the indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest, in particular the Makah, Haida, Kwakwaka'wakw and Tulalip tribes, and research is split between a material culture study of miniature objects from the region in museum collections and fieldwork with contemporary indigenous artists working in miniature.

It is a collaborative award jointly supervised by UCL Anthropology and the British Museum.

Research interests

  • Miniaturisation
  • Native American studies
  • Visual communication
  • Mimesis
  • Authenticity in indigenous art
  • Museum theory

Academic Background/Education

BA in Comparative American Studies (Warwick) 2003-07
MA in Museum Studies (UCL) 2007-08
Collection & Storage Manager at British Museum 2008-2013


2015. "A LEGO Snowmobile and the elements of miniaturisation" in Anthropology Today, Vol. 31, No. 6 (Dec.)

2015. "Dolphins at the British Museum: Zoomorphic Calusa Sinkers" in Papers from the Institute of Archaeology, Vol. 25, No. 2

2015. "Potlatch Coppers: Wealth and Power on the Northwest Coast" in Tinnahs & Seal Skins, Gold Dust & Bingles: Projecting Alaska's History through its Money, ed. Dick Hansom. Fairbanks: Alaska Rare Coins


Arts & Humanities research Council: Collaborative Doctoral Award