I’ve been a huge fan of Juan Ariel Comia’s blog, Be@rbrick Love for the past year. I just love these cute little bears and he has the largest collection of anyone I know. Plus, he takes the most amazing photos of his Be@rbricks. To date, he holds over 400 of these cute collectibles, some highly prized for being designed by contemporary artists and designers from around the world.
Some of my favorites in his collection include:
Wicket Be@rbrick from Star Wars
I’ve hunted high and low in Taiwan to track these lovable toys down. Juan assured me they are here; I just had to look. I finally found them yesterday at the Wan Nian Shopping Complex in Ximending. I purchased four to start my own collection and then rushed home to see what I had bought.
The first box I opened contained the China Be@brick, which I though was very appropriate for my first bear. I love the colors and design on the SF Bear too.
So let me back up a little and give you some more information. The Japanese toy giant, Medicom, designs and produces Be@rbricks. The first Be@rbrick was released in 2001 as a free gift. Today, these highly collectible toys are sold in blind boxes in a series of 18 collectibles. You never know what you’re going to get until you’ve made your purchase.
My Be@rbricks are a standard size of seven centimeters high. These are referred to as 100% Be@rbricks.
Be@rbricks come in a series with 18 figures in 10 different themes.
- Basic, a solid-color figure with a letter in a second color on its chest; when all nine figures are placed in a row, they spell the word Be@rbrick.
- Jellybean, a solid-color figure molded in translucent plastic.
- Pattern, a figure with a patterned deco that may range from polka dots to patterns designed by artist and designer Charles Eames.
- Flag, a figure painted as a nation’s flag.
- Horror, a figure with a theme based upon a well-known horror, or other source in the horror genre.
- SF (an abbreviation of science fiction), a figure with a theme based upon a science fiction source, often a film.
- Cute, a figure which visually represents the concept of cuteness.
- Animal, a figure which depicts an actual animal.
- Artist: two figures, each designed by a visual artist.
Be@rbricks are most often sold individually in “blind box” assortments, in which figures are packed in small boxes, and the only way to know which particular figure is inside a particular box is to purchase and open the box. The box states the frequency of each figure in percentages: Basic, 14.58 percent; Jellybean, 11.45 percent; Pattern, 11.45 percent; Flag 9.37 percent; Horror, 9.37 percent; SF, 10.41 percent; Cute, 13.54 percent; Animal, 8.33 percent; first Artist, 4.16 percent; and second Artist, 1.04 percent.
Contributors range from visual artists such as H.R. Giger to illustrators such as Pushead, graffiti artists such as Stash, and fashion designers including Karl Lagerfeld and Vivienne Westwood. As a result of their limited production, and the participation of artists, Be@rbricks are generally considered designer toys.
I’m officially addicted. One final word of thanks to my friend, Juan, who introduced me to the wonderful world of Be@rbricks. Thanks for sharing your passion and addressing my many questions Juan!