Francesca Talenti, “Puzz-n-Lina”


Francesca Talenti
Hillsborough, North Carolina

8″ x 5″ x 3.5″

Artist Statement

Puzz & Lina is a story-book puzzle: go through the story by peeling the puzzle pieces away, then re-assemble the puzzle by using the story-book pages as cues. Each page is etched (in a smaller version) on the front and back covers, which are the only two panels that do not disassemble. The covers remain intact, and are easily consulted to solve the puzzle.

There are two stories. Depending on whether you start at the front or the back of the story-book puzzle, you’ll find out what happens to Lina the girl or Puzz the cat on the night of this particular full moon.

The circle and the rectangle are the graphic bases for the book’s aesthetic. Using a laser cutter I was able to use the precision of computer-generated geometric forms to etch and cut an organic and tactile material, wood. This duality (computer-generated versus organic) is reflected throughout the piece. Just as there are two stories, two characters, and two sides to each puzzle piece, there are two ways of approaching and thinking of Puzz & Lina: one is spatial, the other narrative. The circles, rectangles, and puzzle pieces are in the spatial realm, while the story is in the narrative one. Both are rarely combined, often divided by gender norms, as boys are encouraged to think spatially and girls narratively. Puzz & Lina bridges this gap.