In Italo Calvino's novel Invisible Cities Marco Polo entertains an aging Kubla Khan by recounting tales of cities that he has visited in his travels. Marco Polo describes fifty-five such cities and the novel revels in the interplay between the different cities so that the reader is left to wonder whether the cities actually represent different aspects of a single city, different internal experiences of place, or something else entirely. Unfortunately, these Vladmasters which recount excerpted tales of only four such cities, cannot hope to recreate the resonances and complexities of the novel. Instead they offer pretty three-dimensional pictures assembled out of small household objects and the hope that those who have not yet read the novel might feel compelled to do so.
This set consists of four handmade Vladmaster reels and a charming box in which to keep them. The reels feature 3D images of dioramas and characters designed, photographed and hand-assembled by Vladimir. The four cities included in the set are: Zirma, a city which mysteriously repeats itself; Valdrada, a city built on a reflective lake where every person and action is mirrored; Argia, a city with dirt in place of air; and Baucis, a city elevated high above the clouds on thin stilts. Each image is accompanied by text printed onto the reel describing the city.