Published: 09th June 2021
Have you seen the Friends reunion mosaic art piece using only Rubik's cubes? We caught up with its maker
PhD researcher Hariprasad CM has been teaching students how to solve the Rubik's cube by showing them the basic algorithm and creating works of art using them
The name Hariprasad CM might seem familiar to you. Let me give you a clue. Friends: The Reunion. Ringing any bells yet? Hari became famous last month for the portrait he made out of Rubik's cubes celebrating Friends: The Reunion, which was widely appreciated by art lovers and cube enthusiasts alike. Intrigued, we decided to learn more about and we are here today to bring you his story.
In 2010, Hariprasad tried solving a Rubik’s cube for the first time. “I got my first cube in 1996, when I was 6 years old,” he says, “But I could never manage to solve it then. I would just play around with it and try to get the same colour on at least one side. And I thought that that was the most that one could do with it! But more than a decade later, I learnt that it could definitely be solved.” One eventful night, he started working on it at 9 PM and finally solved the cube by 4 AM! After checking out a few online tutorials, he realised the simplicity of the equation and was suddenly possessed by an urge to show more people how easily it can be done. So through his special brand called Hariology, he began teaching children how the Rubik’s cube could be solved.
BLOCK BASED: A piece made out of Rubik's cubes on the Friends Reunion
In 2011, he became acquainted with the World Cube Association and the official competitions that they hosted. Motivated, he found the nearest one, which was in Chennai, and decided to participate. Unfortunately, the Chennai Express train arrived late and he missed the competition by a matter of minutes. He says, “I was extremely bummed. I was filled with so much rage that I decided to take matters into my own hands.” In February 2012, he decided to bring the competition home. As a third-year Engineering student at Amrita University, Kollam, he hosted the state’s first World Cube Association competition. Since then, he has devoted his time to teaching more students how to solve the cube. Currently pursuing his PhD at the same university, he initially struggled to make enough time to teach young people to unlock the secret of the cube.
But when the pandemic arrived, he found more time. “I decided to promote it more during the lockdown because it’s a great creative outlet. Since most classes are online now, it’s often a great sign when children get wrapped up in hobbies rather than sit in front of the TV. The Rubik's cube adds another dimension to a kid’s life and intellectual stimulation as well to solve an equation like this,” he says. It was only recently that Hari began delving into the arts. He has bought over 600 Rubik’s cubes and has been trying his hand at cube art. With the six colours - he uses white as the lightest shade and blue as the darkest - he arranges the cubes together, takes a picture and recolours it on Photoshop to create amazing pieces of mosaic art.