Aspiring architects, urban planners in training, and underachieving dictators, take note: the crafty types at Paper Punk have created a kit “that allows anyone to build the city of their dreams with a few simple folds.” Behold Urban Fold, a box full of punch-n-fold shapes, stickers, and more. We asked Paper Punk founder Grace Hawthorne—an artist, author, and educator who heads up the Creative Gym course at Stanford’s d.school—to tell us more about this paper-block city project, which is up for backing (and buying) on Kickstarter through December 2.
(Photo: Matthias Heiderich)
How did you get the idea for Urban Fold?
Urban Fold is a modern take on old-school wooden blocks. I was inspired by this photo (above) by Matthias Heiderich and graffiti I spied in Berlin last year. Not many construction/building activities go beyond solid or primary colors. I wanted to create an urban-minded build/play experience that was also eye-candy, just impossible to resist because it’s bursting with colors, patterns, cool graphics…so fun-looking that you impulsively want to touch and play with it.
How is this different from previous Paper Punk projects?
Urban Fold is Paper Punk’s first boxed set. Unlike our other offerings, it comes packaged in a handsome oversized storage box and has does not include adhesive dots in the set. The intention is for the user to punch-out shapes, fold all the blocks, customize with the 697 provided stickers, build/play, put away in the storage box, bring out and customize/build/play again, etc. I refer it to an open box set because there are so many pieces to it and what anyone can create with it is only bounded by their imagination. All our kits provide open play opportunities, but Urban Fold takes it to a whole new level. We can’t wait till users show us all the crazy cool things they’ll make with Urban Fold.