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Puzzle "Sedici Animali" (Sixteen Animals) Homage to Enzo Mari

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Project by livewire516 posted 11-02-2019 04:42 PM 2231 views 2 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Enzo Mari, the Milanese designer, made Sedici Animali (sixteen animals) in the 1950’s. I believe it was also produced in wood, but most examples I’ve seen are in resin with a faux-grain swirl.

Mine is made of 1” thick maple that I edge jointed to form a 9”x15” panel.

I found a photo of the puzzle online, and used the program InkScape to manually trace the outlines into a Vector Graphic File. If you’re unfamiliar with Vector Graphics: rather than images being represented by pixels (like a bitmap file), vector files basically represent images with formulas of geometric shapes (lines, arcs, parabolas, etc.).

Because of this difference, vector graphics can be made any size without getting fuzzy or distorted, so I was able to enlarge the tracing to a full-size template.

I cut the pieces out by hand with a coping saw, and gave them their final shape with a combo belt/disc sander. Because it was being given to a child, I finished it with a rattle-can of Zinsser shellac.

I loved the final product and would like to do it again, as well as Enzo Mari’s other puzzle, Sedici Pesci (Sixteen Fishes), but I first want to get my late grandfather’s scroll saw up and running: coping this out by hand was tedious.





12 comments so far

View CFrye's profile

CFrye

11407 posts in 3173 days


#1 posted 11-02-2019 05:14 PM

Bravo! I salute your skill and determination in completing this puzzle with a coping saw. 1” thick maple, wow! I often search online for project ideas and have added this one to the ever growing To Do List. I had not considered solid wood due to the concern it would not be strong enough to not break along the grain in the thin spots.
Thanks for sharing!

-- God bless, Candy

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

5466 posts in 3322 days


#2 posted 11-02-2019 05:23 PM

That is very interesting and I had never heard of Enzo Mari. Thanks for posting this puzzle and I think I may try making one.

View mel52's profile

mel52

2302 posts in 1598 days


#3 posted 11-02-2019 06:13 PM

No way would I have been able to do that good with a coping saw. Actually I would be lazy to do it that way !!!! Great job !!! Mel

-- MEL, Kansas

View ClaudeF's profile

ClaudeF

1434 posts in 3041 days


#4 posted 11-02-2019 07:22 PM

Well done. You have lots of patience to do this with a coping saw!

Claude

-- https://www.etsy.com/shop/ClaudesWoodcarving

View livewire516's profile

livewire516

120 posts in 1194 days


#5 posted 11-03-2019 01:39 AM


Bravo! I salute your skill and determination in completing this puzzle with a coping saw. 1” thick maple, wow! I often search online for project ideas and have added this one to the ever growing To Do List. I had not considered solid wood due to the concern it would not be strong enough to not break along the grain in the thin spots.
Thanks for sharing!

- CFrye

Thanks for the kind words. Yeah, I actually think it would come out well in a good quality plywood; even with it being thick and in maple, I was a little concerned about some parts that are unsupported short grain. Since I gave this as a young child’s birthday gift, I chose maple for it being less likely to split along the grain, into sharp pieces, than something like oak.

View livewire516's profile

livewire516

120 posts in 1194 days


#6 posted 11-03-2019 01:43 AM


That is very interesting and I had never heard of Enzo Mari. Thanks for posting this puzzle and I think I may try making one.

- Redoak49

He is an industrial designer and not a woodworker per se; however, I first read about him when Christopher Schwarz made a table from Mari’s experimental book called Autoprogettazione.

This is his other puzzle, manufactured by Danese Milano, playing with this theme:

View livewire516's profile

livewire516

120 posts in 1194 days


#7 posted 11-03-2019 01:49 AM


No way would I have been able to do that good with a coping saw. Actually I would be lazy to do it that way !!!! Great job !!! Mel

- mel52


Well done. You have lots of patience to do this with a coping saw!

Claude

- ClaudeF

Haha, I don’t have enough patience to ever do it that way again!

View Ivan's profile

Ivan

17135 posts in 4201 days


#8 posted 11-03-2019 10:06 AM

Nice work, puzzles are always good play.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Grumpy's profile

Grumpy

26812 posts in 5184 days


#9 posted 11-05-2019 10:14 PM

Nice job and congratulations on your ‘Daily Top 3’ award.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View livewire516's profile

livewire516

120 posts in 1194 days


#10 posted 11-06-2019 08:48 PM


Nice work, puzzles are always good play.

- Ivan


Nice job and congratulations on your Daily Top 3 award.

- Grumpy

Thank you both

View Phil32's profile

Phil32

1633 posts in 1237 days


#11 posted 11-06-2019 10:17 PM

There is an interesting relationship to Escher’s tessellations such as this adaptation of “Sun & Moon:”

https://www.lumberjocks.com/projects/402281

-- You know, this site doesn't require woodworking skills, but you should know how to write.

View trsnider's profile

trsnider

299 posts in 3343 days


#12 posted 11-23-2019 03:11 AM

Very Cool

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