This miniature diorama perfectly recreates legendary Mississippi juke joint "Junior's Place"

If you've always wanted to visit a juke joint in Mississippi but have never made your way to The Magnolia State, here's a way to get a little glimpse of one of the most famous. Garden and Gun has a wonderful article about Oxford, Mississippi-based artist Lee Harper's miniature diorama of Junior's Place, a juke joint owned by Mississippi blues artist David "Junior" Kimbrough that was located in Chulahoma, Mississippi, but which sadly burned down in April, 2000.

Photographer Bill Steber, who was one of only a few photographers who were permitted by "Junior" to take photos in the juke joint between 1993 and 1999, was able to walk through the ruins of the burned-down building shortly after its demise in order to try to salvage some of its rich history. Garden and Gun explains:

He walked the ashen remains and collected artifacts like quarters found underneath the spot where the jukebox sat. He also measured the footprint dimensions. . .

Steber recently commissioned artist Lee Harper, of Tiny History Studios, to re-create, according to Garden and Gun, every "inch, smudge, and crumpled cigarette butt" in a mini diorama of the Junior's Place. 

Harper's attention to detail is astounding, and was aided by Steber's photographs and the objects he collected from the juke joint's rubble. Garden and Gun explains:

She stocked the club's cooler, for instance, with beer made from a long dowel rod, which she painted and then cut into individual Busch Light and Budweiser cans, and fashioned cigarettes for the tiny ashtrays out of wire. Pieces of a fitted sheet became the curtains. For Junior's personal chair—perhaps the most important piece of the scene—she used lambskin from an old pair of gardening gloves that cracked in just the right way when rubbed. Thin strips of paper became the duct tape, covering holes Junior had worn in the vinyl. But the project was as much an engineering challenge as an art project; she devised a concoction of super glue and miniscule mirrors to recreate the building's fogged-over fluorescent lights, which she rigged to switch on and off.

The result is an absolutely impressive recreation of Junior's Place–you should definitely check it out through this online tour of Harper's diorama, filmed by Andy Harper. The YouTube description of the video explains that the video's background music is:

set to an interpretation of Kimbrough's "All Night Long" performed by North Mississippi Allstars, featuring Luther and Cody Dickinson and Cedric Burnside—all of whom learned in part by watching Junior and playing at the juke.

To see more of Lee Harper's work visit her website, Tiny History Studios.