Wednesday, January 14, 2015

More Puzzle History: The Great Cairn

The Great Cairn 2008

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The following project, a couple of years after we recovered from the trauma, was again a Barenforum project called The Great Baren Cairn.

This amazing collection of images was designed as a cairn, basically a pile of rocks traditionally made by travelers as they pass a certain spot on the road. The description I gave participants was this:

In my view, Baren (http://barenforum.org) is much like a cairn, with all sorts of people coming and going and everyone leaving their little stone as a marker, indication, simple "I was here", bit of guidance, pebble of wisdom, and an infinite etcetera. While the last puzzle sought an answer for the question "What is Baren?" the Cairn theme perhaps states "My contribution to Baren" or "How I fit into Baren" or simply, as a traveler might, "this is my footprint" but that's just three of many possible interpretations.

The Great Cairn, as I often referred to the beast, was a three panel print, logically following from the previous two-panel creation.

Project was started May 2006 and finished June 2008. Seventy-four artists participated, still within Barenforum.org membership. Three cherry wood blocks, same size as the previous puzzle were used to print three panels in a vertical format.

The image for The Great Cairn resulted in a more “puzzle-like” feel and the overall composition is indeed great to behold. The vertical format perhaps makes it look a bit more massive than the prior puzzle print and the images of participants representing each “stone” stacked up perfectly within the massive boulders.
And why would I stop there?

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