Artist Pat Acton of Matchstick Marvels has constructed a massive model of Minas Tirith, the fictional city within the world of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, with 420,000 matchsticks. The Iowa native, who has been working with matchsticks since he graduated from college back in 1977, uses techniques acquired through experience with the material of choice to assemble the intricate structure.
Taking nearly three years to complete, Acton’s model contains hundreds of city buildings from the fully fleshed out series, including the Citadel, the Tree of Gondor, and the White Tower of Ecthelion. Additionally, the artist used 24,000 small wooden blocks to construct Mount Mindolluin, which also serves as a supportive structure for the towering matchstick sculpture.
To see them in person, many of Acton’s sculptures are on display at the Matchstick Marvels Museum in Gladbrook, Iowa.