This Artist Creates Hyperrealistic Mashups By Using Jigsaw Puzzles

2019-01-15T14:45:11+00:00By |INSPIRING STORIES|

While many jigsaw junkies enjoy creating order out of chaos, Vancouver-based artist Tim Klein likes to break the rules by creatively playing the game. After discovering that manufacturing companies reuse the same pieces for multiple puzzles, he decided to have some fun by combining the interchangeable pieces to make his montage puzzle art.

Klein prefers to use retro puzzles from thrift stores and garage sales, across a variety of themes and subjects. The random nature of Klein’s medium leads to surreal artworks that will make you chuckle, while some also visualize deeper meanings.


In one puzzle mashup—made using pieces from two Golden Guild puzzles from the 1980s—Klein merges a North Carolina mansion with Mt. Jefferson, seamlessly blending nature with the human-made. In others, Klein comically mixes up puzzle pieces from animal photos, creating his hybrid creatures. “I take great pleasure in ‘discovering’ such bizarre images lying latent, sometimes for decades, within the pieces of ordinary mass-produced puzzles,” reveals Klein. “As I shift the pieces back and forth, trying different combinations, I feel like an archaeologist unearthing a hidden artifact.”


Scroll down to see some of Klein’s mismatch creations and discover more of the artist’s puzzle portfolio on his website.

“Daisy Bindi”


“Iron Horse”


“Mountain Plantation” – This was the first puzzle montage I ever created, using pieces from two Golden Guild puzzles from the 1980s or ’90s. One puzzle showed the mansion at Orton Plantation, located in my boyhood hometown of Wilmington, North Carolina. The other puzzle showed Mt. Jefferson, near my current home in the Pacific Northwest.


“How The West Was Won”


“Thaw (Warm Breath On A Winter Window)” – Perhaps this montage was too easy! After all, the pieces came from two puzzles showing the same scene. They were Milton Bradley puzzles from the late 1960s, taken from a set of “four seasons” paintings by Paul Detlefsen. (When I show this one in public, I credit it to “Tim Klein, after Paul Detlefsen”.) At the bottom of the “thawed” circle, where green spring meets white winter, the curvature of the puzzle pieces gives a nice melting effect. It’s as if you, seeing the winter scene through a window, have breathed upon the glass and magically revealed a glimpse of the warm spring to come.


“Bow Wow” – A diptych made from two miniature Springbok puzzles published in the 1980s, one showing a dog and one showing a clown saying “Wow!!” The two halves are inverses, each one using all the pieces not used in the other. This pair debuted at the Splendorporium gallery in Portland, Oregon, as part of a circus-themed exhibit.


“The Mercy-Go-Round (Sunshine And Shadow)” – I made this montage by combining a Puzzlebug-brand puzzle showing a church with another one showing a carnival ride. I’ve been a bit surprised at the wide range of reactions it gets. Some people find it humorous, others find it affirming or joyful, and others see it as blasphemous or insulting.


“King Of The Road” – Constructed from two Springbok puzzles from the 1970s.


“Were-Rabbit” – Made from the pieces of two small Puzzlebug brand puzzles, one showing a bunny and one showing a dinosaur under a full moon.


“Pig Jaw Suzzle #2”


“Pig Jaw Suzzle #1”


“Waterfall Grille” – Made from two small panoramic Perfect Fit brand puzzles.


“The Dance Of The Bathroom Cleaning Fairies” – Made from two Springbok puzzles published in the 1980s.


“White Elephant (Present And Future)” – Made from pieces of two Springbok puzzles published in 1978 and 1980.


“T’ Rainosaurus Rex”


“The Other Side” – Made from two American Publishing Company puzzles from the 1980s. Most of my puzzle montages are in a single plane, with pieces from the two source puzzles intermixed. But in this one, the coins puzzle is on top of the puzzle containing the eyes, resulting in a two-layered piece. Thus, the eyes look into the viewer’s eyes from the other side of a wall of gold.


“The All-Seeing Elephant”


“Soda Pup” – Made from two Springbok puzzles from 1979 and 1980.


“A Modest Proposal For The Increase Of Attendance At Classical Music Concerts” – Made from two Springbok puzzles from the 1980s, one showing a horn and one showing cookies magically flying out of a cookie jar.


This article was originally sourced from here.

About the Author:

Justin Dulac