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by Jonah Samson
on 15 May 2008

On a recent visit to Blue Bottle art gallery and store in Seattle, I picked up an amazing set of View Master reels. Now normally any old set of View Master reels is enough to get me excited, but these actually caused me to jump up an down a little bit.

The Vladmaster disk sets were created by a Portland artist named Vladimir, who started creating her own reels from second-hand View Masters in 2003 by interpreting stories by Franz Kafka. After learning how to create 3-D photographs, she built miniature scenes, photographed them and glued the resulting images into custom-printed reels. Originally, the Vladmasters were viewed like short films in theaters, where accompanying music would follow the images and a clanging bell would instruct hundreds of people to click their View Masters simultaneously.

Each of her creations can be purchased in a small paper folder that can be taken home for your own private viewing pleasure. The sets contain four Vladmaster reels and a mini disc with the original music and instructions. My personal favorite is “Actaeon at Home.”


Vladmasters are available starting at $18 through the Vladmaster site. A list of shops that carry the sets is also listed there.

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