Yinka Shonibare's work explores issues of race and class through different media including sculpture, painting, photography, and installation art. For this edition, Shonibare designed a dollhouse that is a replica of the 1872 Victorian town house in the East End of London where he now lives. By replicating his own house, the artist comments on the 18th century tradition of dollhouses being commissioned objects that were exact miniature replicas of larger homes for elite and well-to-do families.
As in many of his other projects, Dutch wax print cloth figures prominently in this dollhouse with the chairs and bed are covered in the fabric. To impart a lived-in quality, Shonibare selected furniture in various woods and styles to fill the rooms. The two-story house includes cabinets, chairs, tables, fireplaces, and a canopy bed, along with reproductions of paintings by Shonibare and Jean-Honor‚ Fragonard.