Visual Puns

A place where beginners can participate, ask questions, and post their views. However, beginners typically ask a lot of questions about sources, tricks, books, and so on. In fact, all magicians are interested (or should be) in the provenance of tricks, ideas, and related matters. This department will service these needs.
Bill Mullins
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Visual Puns

Postby Bill Mullins » April 2nd, 2014, 1:00 am

Troublewit, Aldo Colombini's use of a folding carpenter's rule, and (to a lesser extent) Chapeaugraphy are all routines in which an object is manipulated into shapes and patterns that recall other objects and forms.

Is there a name for this kind of routine? Are there others?

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Joe Pecore
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Joe Pecore » April 2nd, 2014, 4:15 am

Bill Mullins wrote:Troublewit, Aldo Colombini's use of a folding carpenter's rule, and (to a lesser extent) Chapeaugraphy are all routines in which an object is manipulated into shapes and patterns that recall other objects and forms.

Is there a name for this kind of routine? Are there others?

Balloon animals? Or does it need to be something that is unfolded and shaped again?
Share your knowledge on the MagicPedia wiki.

Jonathan Townsend
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Jonathan Townsend » April 2nd, 2014, 9:54 am

static impressions?
Mundus vult decipi -per Caleb Carr's story Killing Time

Pete McCabe
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Pete McCabe » April 2nd, 2014, 11:04 am

Sculpetry?

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Andrew Pinard
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Andrew Pinard » April 2nd, 2014, 4:44 pm

Allied Arts....

I would include Chalk Talk, Sand Art, and Rag Pictures in that list. I don't believe that there is a specific term to lump them together, but ambiguous art is about as close as I can think of...

Andrew

(BTW: I got your emails, Bill, just haven't had a moment to get back to you. I will try by the end of the week...)

Also, I never saw Aldo doing the carpenter rule bit, but I do believe it was originated by Larry Arcuri (it is referenced as "Ruler Wit" in the April 1951 Linking Ring on Page 50).

Bill Mullins
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Bill Mullins » April 2nd, 2014, 10:40 pm

"Allied Arts" would include (to me) ventriloquism, juggling, puppetry.

I should have included tamasudare in the original list.

Troublewit, tamasudare, chapeaugraphy, the carpenter rule -- all of them have something in common (in my mind, at least) that isn't shared by sand art, chalk talks, balloon animals, but I'm not being very successful in distinguishing that characteristic.

I had no idea that the ruler routine went back as far as 1951. It also looks like Daren Dundee had a manuscript on the subject ca. 1978 called "A Measure of Fun".

Edwin Corrie
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Edwin Corrie » April 3rd, 2014, 3:39 am

I was going to suggest "performance art" (as distinct from "performing art"), which would be fairly descriptive but is actually an established term for a very different kind of "art" (the pictures on Google Images are nothing like Troublewit). I like Pete’s term "sculpetry"...

Tamasudare looks interesting (Wikipedia) – I’d never heard of that before.

The only other examples that come to mind are pretty minor and really only sub-categories of other things:

- In origami there’s something called the Multiform, which is a simple form (a Windmill Base) that can be folded into a Vase, a Boat and a couple of other things. It’s very limited and not often mentioned these days.
- Paper Cutting and Tearing (like the Captain’s Shirt story)
- Tangram and related shape puzzles (yes they’re puzzles, but you do make all sorts of different shapes out of the pieces)
- The Jacob’s Ladder or Tumbling Blocks toy (there are a few different patterns you can make)
- Linking Rings (the Garden Swing, Globe and Flower sequence)

Not sure if any of these really count.

Bill Mullins
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Bill Mullins » April 3rd, 2014, 9:02 am

Edwin Corrie wrote: Tamasudare looks interesting (Wikipedia) – I’d never heard of that before.


It is interesting, especially when done well. Mark Mitton and Richard Hatch both have routines that are excellent (and are completely different from each other).

Brad Henderson
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Brad Henderson » April 3rd, 2014, 11:02 am

surrealism

or at least one aspect there of - the transformation and subversion of the image (through recontextualization). and the surrealists loved puns.

would Sam the bellhop not be also included - it is also a recontextualization of meaning (especially when presented as an improvisation) also into a narrative form (which is not always an element of chapeuagraphy or troublewit) albeit the visual nature is less privledged.

The idea at the heart of these demonstrations is in itself magic - empowering the audience to see a different reality within the mundane. The transformation of a piece of paper into a candlestick and then a piece of candy is essentially pure magic - manipulating the audiences perceptions without deceptive elements at play. Would that make it real magic?

no wonder art and story telling are often described as magical when done successfully - turning a blob of blue pigment into a pirate shop or 'angst', or conjuring entire worlds out of mere vibrations of one's vocal chords is far more impressive than secretly hiding a coin in one's hand, yes?

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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Ian Kendall » April 3rd, 2014, 11:15 am

If you want to take this kind of thing into the close up arena and don't have one of Pat Page's pocket troublewits, you might like to examine A Boy's Modest Adventure from Folding Money Fooling.

Actually, don't bother. Really. Nothing to see here. Move on now.

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Andrew Pinard
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Andrew Pinard » April 4th, 2014, 10:22 am

I think I get where Bill is going; please correct me if I'm off base. I think what is being referred to is the process of manipulating an apparently simple object to represent/infer other objects/experiences/concepts.

Another example would be the "ten minutes with a handkerchief" whereby the performer manipulates a handkerchief into many shapes with the intention of relating a story or experience.

I do like Pete's "Sculptetry" (though that limits it to three dimensional forms) but... how about "Transformational Theatre" or "Metaphorical Magic" or "Simple Storytelling Sorcery"?

If my description is accurate, then I still believe that chalk talk, sand art, rag (and smoke) pictures are related as they use a simple medium to relate a story in a transformational way that plays on perceptions. The aspects of each that apply are that moment when an audience perceives what is being built by the performer (like those painters who paint upside down and then spin the canvas to reveal the image).

Am I getting warmer?

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Q. Kumber
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Q. Kumber » April 5th, 2014, 4:41 pm

Here's "Five Minutes With a Pocket Handkerchief", which I recorded for Vic Pinto in 1999, now available from Meir Yedid with full explanations.

Vic had seen me do this and wanted to record it at The Magic Circle. I insisted that it had to be taped live in front of an audience of children. We taped the explanations at his studio and then he said, "There isn't a need to go to the local school." I insisted and after the taping, he said, "I see what you meant."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WM7zevp ... r_embedded

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Andrew Pinard
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Re: Visual Puns

Postby Andrew Pinard » April 6th, 2014, 8:01 am

Quentin's piece is lovely (thanks for sharing it, I really enjoyed revisiting it).

Some of the other shapes that can be made with napkin folding include the Lady Fatima and chicken/turkey. There are many books regarding napkin folding and a number of books recently on towel folding (which basically is napkin folding blown up). More here at Amazon: http://amzn.to/1lDKR1o

I have played with towel folding quite a bit. I use a couple of towels in my shows, but haven't integrated the folding in the act yet. I think it fits what Bill described earlier...

A simple shape that transforms and tells a story...


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