Around my house, especially in the summertime, killing ants becomes a hobby. There are lots of different sizes and colors coming in and trying to eat the piles of food that my kids drop on the floor during meals — big, small, red, brown, and black. But I smush them all. R 194 appears to have a different view on ants, one that is decidedly more pleasant and whimsical. Instead of a voracious intruder, we get a curious explorer, lighting up its way with a lantern, ready to dig with a shovel and pick, and investigating with the magnifying glass. The mandibles look spot on with the tooth elements, and the antennae are perfect made with paint rollers. The shaping on the head and the articulation of the joints looks great, and I love the delightful yellow boots on the hindmost feet. But I still don’t like ants in my house.
Of course your first thought would be, “A Bug’s Life,” but beyond that, this little creature by Riccardo Zangelmi is a beautifully delicate creation. It is elegant in its minmal use of elements. I can imagine a series of vignettes based on the adventures of Tom the Ant. I wonder if it’s inspired by Tom Sawyer?