analogue image composition tool

Every day we create images on our smartphones, tapping, wiping, moving back and forth our fingers. Pixels, minimal units that are able to adapt different color states, form an image in their entirety. Kuro tries to contribute to this principle by means of craftsmanship, engaging the physically tangible and thus suggest a new understanding for hand and image.


Inspired by the Japanese aesthetics of light and shadow (kuro, 黒 = black) a “tablet” of a quite different kind was developed, impressing both through simple construction and the unlimited possibilities of user interaction.

20 × 30 = 600 small wooden cylinders, half-side blackened, are lying loosely in a board’s grooves. The grayscale value of each cylinder may be altered by gentle rotation, which ultimately creates an image. Unless the user decides to fasten his work with a tenter frame (enabling safe tilting), the overall visual impression stays afloat and ephemeral.


Kuro may be used as a leisure device or creative sport as well as a didactic instrument in drawing classes. Further applications such as in the fields of art therapy and animation films are possible.