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Aiming to Make Art More Accessible and Diverse, Apostrophe Puzzles Releases Artist-Designed Jigsaws

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Aiming to Make Art More Accessible and Diverse, Apostrophe Puzzles Releases Artist-Designed Jigsaws

January 13, 2022

Grace Ebert

Liz Flores. All images (C) Apostrophe Puzzles, shared with permission

Apostrophe Puzzles is at the nexus of art and accessibility. Founder Mandi Masden launched the Brooklyn-based company in 2019 with the goal of making the works usually confined to galleries, museums, and the collections of wealthy patrons more affordable to average consumers. “I am really aiming to utilize puzzles to bridge the gap of accessibility to fine art and to make art collecting something everyone can participate in,” she explains.

The company, which borrows its name from the punctuation indicating either possession or omission, collaborates exclusively with contemporary artists of color to design 1,000-piece jigsaws featuring their works. In the last two years, it’s released two collections, with the most recent including Liz Flores‘s colorful, abstract bodies, the powerfully posed women at the center of Tim Okamura‘s portraits (previously), and Ronald Jackson‘s masked figures.

Many of the jigsaws, which are printed on 100% recycled boards with non-toxic ink, have sold out their initial runs, a testament to Apostrophe’s mission. “We believe in the importance and necessity of diverse representation in both the puzzle and art world and hope that our collections help change the face of art consumerism,” the company said. Each purchase directly supports the creators– “We are currently at 12% for all artists and hope to continue to increase that number as we grow,” Masden shares–and a portion also is donated to the company’s nonprofit partner, ProjectArt, a tuition-free program offering art classes and residencies in partnership with public libraries.

Apostrophe plans to release four new puzzles annually, and you can purchase available designs and start collecting them all by heading to its shop.

Tim Okamura

Ronald Jackson

Tim Okamura

Liz Flores

Marianne Angeli Rodriguez

Vinita Karim

#puzzles

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SpaceWalk: a Spectacular Rollercoaster-Esque Staircase Loops Through a South Korean Park

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#public art
#sculpture
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#steel

SpaceWalk: A Spectacular Rollercoaster-Esque Staircase Loops Through a South Korean Park

January 27, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images (C) Heike Mutter and Ulrich Genth

Towering 70-meters above ground at its highest point, “SpaceWalk” is the latest undulating sculpture by Hamburg-based artists Heike Mutter and Ulrich Genth. The monumental staircase winds in loops and elevations similar to that of a rollercoaster throughout Hwanho Park in Pohang, South Korea, and is almost entirely accessible for pedestrians except for the innermost circuit. It’s the largest contemporary public sculpture ever installed in the country.

A follow-up to the pair’s 2011 project “Tiger & Turtle – Magic Mountain” in Duisburg, Germany, “SpaceWalk” is built of galvanized and stainless steels atop a cement foundation and embedded rows of LED lights. “At night in particular, the brightly-illuminated walkway appears like a sigil drawn in the sky, appearing to represent different things depending on where one is standing,” Mutter and Genth say. “Thus, the sculpture also references local mythology and a tradition of sky-gazing and also makes playful use of relativity.”

Pedestrians enter the work at a central staircase, which breaks into two paths: one gently sloped walkway leads to a view of Yeongil Bay and the surrounding city, while the other is a steeper climb through a helix. Both are designed to mimic an otherworldly experience. “The title ‘SpaceWalk’ is taken from the terminology of outer space missions. It describes the act of exiting the space vehicle in the weightlessness of outer space. More literally, ‘SpaceWalk’ can be understood to mean ‘a walk through space,'” they say.

For more of the duo’s architectural projects, head to their site. (via This Isn’t Happiness)

#public art
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#stairs
#steel

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Archeologists Unearth a Roman Glass Bowl Dating Back 2,000 Years in Pristine Condition

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Archeologists Unearth a Roman Glass Bowl Dating Back 2,000 Years in Pristine Condition

January 27, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images courtesy Marieke Mom, shared with permission

Sitting a few miles from the German border, Nijmegen is the oldest city in The Netherlands, and after a recent archeological dig, it’s also the site that unearthed a stunningly preserved bowl made of blue glass. The pristine finding, which is estimated to be about 2,000 years old, is from the agricultural Bataven settlement that once populated the region. Featuring diagonal ridges, the translucent vessel was made by pouring molten glass into a mold, sculpting the stripes while the material was liquid, and using metal oxide to produce the vibrant blue. Archeologists uncovered it without a single chip or crack.

Around the time the bowl was procured, Nijmegen was an early Roman military camp and later, the first to be named a municipium, or Roman city. Archeologist Pepjin van de Geer, who led the excavation, told the De Stentor that while it’s possible the vessel was created in a German glass workshop in cities like Cologne or Xanten, it’s also likely that the Batavians traded cattle hides to procure it. In addition to the piece, van de Geer’s team has also uncovered human bones, pitchers, cups, and other precious goods like jewelry, which indicates the site was once a burial ground. (via Hyperallergic)

The excavation site

#archaeology
#bowls
#glass

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PlayStation Plus Offers Tiny Tina’s Assault on Dragon Keep, UFC 4 in February

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Image: Gearbox Software/2K

Planet Coaster for PS5 rounds out the list

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