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Visionaire 62 Rio

The shape-shifting arts and fashion publication goes stereoscopic

by Graham Hiemstra in Culture on 06 August 2012

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Continually pushing the boundaries of traditional publishing, quarterly art and fashion magazine Visionaire has released their 62nd issue in conjunction with NYC-based design firm Aruliden and Brazilian retail developer and contemporary art patron Iguatemi. As with each issue, the theme and format has once again changed. This time Visionaire takes the form of a stereoscope. Designed, developed and manufactured by Aruliden, the "issue" contains 18 slides depicting photographic works by a wide range of renowned artists to express the life, culture and arts of Brazil without any of the samba dancing clichés. Artists featured include Maurizio Cattelan, Marco Brambilla, Alas & Marcus Piggott and even Karl Lagerfeld.

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Each slide features two images, shot from two cameras at a measured distance from both each other and the subject. The stereoscope's two lenses are spaced from each other and the viewing plane at the same proportion putting the slide at the correct distance ratio from your line of sight to best capture the stereoscope's ability create the illusion of three dimensions. The impressively sharp images are seen as if at the end of a long dark hallway. Much like one would encounter art in a gallery—surrounded by white walls with a single object of attention—the user gets a uniquely isolated viewing experience from the black box stereoscope.

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Described by Aruliden founder and lead designer Johan Liden as a "non object," the stereoscope's beautifully designed block-like body seems both intuitive and ambiguous at the same time. On one end the soft nose and eye cutouts seem to encourage the user to hold it to their face, while the sharp edges and matte finish of the other sides offer few clues as to the product's purpose. "Architecturally it's very linear and square," says Liden, explaining that the injection-molded plastic is produced with a slightly silky, soft touch finish to soften the device without changing its shape and make it more "friendly."

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While the low-tech stereoscope may seem basic in form, it was no easy feat to create. Liden and his team worked on the design for an entire year, toying with options from shapes inspired by an open book to an ode to the classic ViewMaster 3D toy. After extensive prototyping and testing ideas, the design team settled on the final, elegant shape.

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Available in a choice of two lenticular-paneled boxes, the limited-run Visionaire issue 62 Rio can now be bought directly from Visionaire. Limited to just 2,000 total editions, issue 62 sells for $375. For a closer look at the packaging and product design see the slideshow.

Images by Graham Hiemstra and Aruliden

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