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About Puzzle Montage

Jigsaw puzzle manufacturers often use the same die-cut pattern for many different puzzles. This makes the pieces interchangeable. As a result, I sometimes find that I can combine portions from two or more puzzles from the same publisher, to make a surreal picture that the publisher never imagined. I take great pleasure in “discovering” such bizarre images lying latent, sometimes for decades, within the cardboard boxes of ordinary mass-produced puzzles. As I shift the pieces back and forth, trying different combinations, I feel like an archaeologist reconstructing some curious, shattered artifact.

The originator and undisputed master of puzzle montage is art professor Mel Andringa, who has been extensively developing the form for over 50 years. (He usually refers to it as collage or mosaic rather than montage though.) I was inspired by a magazine article about him in 1988. If you like my work, then you'll surely love his! (Click here for a small sampling. The octagonal lion face is the one that first captivated me.)

Over the years I've encountered only a few works by other artists who combined found jigsaw puzzles in this way, including Kent Rogowski, Geraint Edwards, and Dave Gorman. And then there's Alma Haser, who makes exquisite artworks by combining custom-made puzzles cut from her own photographs, rather than found puzzles. I'd love to hear about any others who have explored this obscure art form. Maybe you'd like to try your hand at it yourself.

Thank you for your interest!

Tim Klein
Vancouver, Washington, USA
artist@puzzlemontage.com

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