Silicon Stu + London Booth

London, Blades & Stupidity in 2018

Puzzling World has had a busy summer - but not just with an influx of visitors and a full rebranding as many additions, both large and small, finishing touches and plans are advanced to help improve their offering further and assist in cementing their “weird” theme.    

Mid-December saw the unveiling of a large illusionary mural inside the businesses’ Sculptillusion Gallery. One of the ‘pods’ that displays ‘Silicon Stu’, a hyper-realistic model of business founder, London-born Stuart Landsborough and an infinity illusion housed inside a classic red phone box was the obvious choice for a thematic mural.

“We've been very lucky to have had an extremely talented local artist, Minhal Al Halabi on site to create an incredible scene that blends NZ native bush, iconic London landmarks and operatic superstars together with morphing lions, birds, fish and many other whimsical touches. In line with our business always seeking to add intrigue to all our spaces, this fits the bill!” says Duncan Spear, marketing manager

Also in time for the summer traffic, the latest in Holographic advertising was given a home in the Hologram Hall illusion room. A Holoblade, featuring an LED strip able to display up to 16.7 Million colours on an incredibly fast spinning blade has been housed behind a glass case (for good reason!) near the exit to the room. Featuring a rotating display of filling Coke cans, fluttering butterflies, spinning Nike shoes and other objects seemingly floating in space, the projection has proven to be a simple but popular offering. “We have a contact based in Auckland who has provided us with cutting-edge holographic technology for many years so once again, we’re able to showcase the latest in a field that can trace its origins to the 1940’s” Duncan adds.

The awesome creativity of Wanaka’s sculptors is once again on show with an incredible stone sculpture commission just completed by Josh Olley, a talented local artist using a large stone slab previously used as a bollard at the attraction for over 30 years.

“When Josh came to see us and told us we had a fantastic example of Piemontite schist on our front lawn we were gobsmacked. This stone is only found in our area and when carved and polished gives a stunning purple finish” Duncan relates. With a unique and illusionary design in mind Josh spent weeks crafting the stone into a sculpture that offers the viewer a visual and tactile treat named ‘Them and Us’. To Josh, the sculpture evokes that, “We are not separated by culture, we just 'move' uniquely but are still part of the whole. The real strength is in unity”.

Not all additions are large in scale as even mundane things like bathroom coat-hooks aren’t immune to be given a unique and thematic twist. Metalworks Wanaka were commissioned to create a pair of Rubiks Cube & Jigsaw coat-hooks to match the murals on the ground of the illusion room toilets. Made of heavy materials and fixed onto a steel plate these popular (and functional) additions will certainly outlast their standard predecessors and offer yet more toilet-based photo moments at Puzzling World! 

A new year will also bring a new exhibition to the business that celebrates what might be described as “genius stupidity” A large display of  impossible or useless inventions and creations by local sculptors and artists will be on show from April, all aimed to amuse, confuse and amaze. From Steam-powered Walking sticks, Umbrella Shoes, a Multi-Tool glove, 2-Way Scooter and many more items, we ask the question - how would that ever work?!

As you can see, there’s plenty more reasons to visit Puzzling World in 2018, so if you haven’t been to “Wanaka’s World of Weirdness” recently, now’s the time!