Imagine completing a jigsaw puzzle made up of 5000 pieces – but with no picture. That’s the premise of the 5000 puzzle, where each piece is a slightly different colour to the piece that fits next to it. Created by designer and artist Clemens Habicht, the puzzle started life as a 1,000 piece set, but due to cries of “too easy” from jigsaw aficionados Habicht revisited the original, increasing the pieces and colour detail to the power of five. If you love colour and can’t help taking those online tests to see how well you can distinguish between subtle gradations of colour then this is the puzzle for you. Its conception came with the realisation for Habicht that doing bits of a jigsaw by colour rather than image was both more challenging and enjoyable.
“The idea came from enjoying the subtle differences in the blue of a sky in a particularly brutal jigsaw puzzle,” he has explained. “I found that without the presence of image detail to help locate a piece I was relying only on an intuitive sense of colour, and this was much more satisfying to do than the areas with image details. What is strange is that unlike ordinary puzzles where you are in effect redrawing a specific picture from a reference you have a sense of where every piece belongs compared to every other piece. There is a real logic in the doing that is weirdly soothing, therapeutic, it must be the German coming out in me. As each piece clicks perfectly into place, just so, it’s a little win, like a little pat on the back.”
The puzzle is also available for budding colour experts, in a 100-piece set, and Habicht is currently working on a 2nd edition of the 5000-piece puzzle, with a landscape layout and different ‘ribbon’ patterning in the colour spectrum. Surely the perfect gift for colour-lovers, or just friends you know who don’t have a television. We hate to think how long it takes, but for a time-lapse view check out a short video here – and yes, when the very last piece goes in it feels pretty satisfying.