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Pin Art or Pinscreen is an executive toy patented by Ward Fleming. It consists of a boxed surface made of a crowded array of pins that are free to slide in and out independently in a screen to create a three-dimensional relief. Other similar product names are "PinPressions" and "Pinhead". Pinscreens were previously applied as animation in films.
Pinscreen toys were once made of metal pins. Because the metal pins were heavier and bent easily, newer Pinscreen toys are generally made of plastic pins.
A giant 4' x 8' pinscreen is at the Swiss Science Center Technorama in Winterthur, Switzerland. This screen is like a large 3D drawing pad that can work with different sizes of paintbrushes for calligraphy.
In popular culture
- The pinscreen was popularized in the 1985 music video for the Midge Ure song "If I Was", which included a giant body-sized version.
- In 1990 it was used in the film "Darkman" by Sam Raimi starring Liam Neeson to duplicate an enemy's hand.
- A 1997 Coca-Cola ad, directed by Industrial Light & Magic, involves the use of a computer-generated imagery pinscreen.
- In the 2000 film X-Men, a computerized pinscreen displaying a model of New York City is used by the X-Men to plan an attack against Magneto.
- A digitally produced pinscreen is featured in the 2005 music video for the Nine Inch Nails song "Only", directed by David Fincher.
- Similar to "Only," a digitally produced pinscreen is featured in the 2008 music video for the Eagles of Death Metal song "Wannabe in LA".
- A 2007 advertising campaign by the Discovery Channel involved a pinscreen forming various images, such as that of the Sydney Opera House and whales.
- The 2013 film Man of Steel involves several CG pinscreens which serve as personal computers on Kal-El's homeworld of Krypton.
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