U.S. # 4722
2013 46¢ Yellow-Orange
Modern kaleidoscopes take all shapes and sizes. Each one is a work of art inviting viewers into the artist’s unique vision. The world’s largest kaleidoscope is located in Mt. Tremper, New York. It stands 64 feet tall and has no eyepiece. Instead, people stand at the base to view the image, which is projected downward onto three reflective panels. The resulting image is a sphere of 254 hexagons that measures 50 feet across.
At a 2005 expo in Aichi, Japan, a 130-foot-tall kaleidoscope was built in the Earth Tower. Three large oil-filled revolving discs filtered natural incoming light that was then reflected by large mirrors. The resulting image was 118 feet wide and was viewed by people standing inside the tower. Another designer, Don Doaks, holds the patent for 3-D kaleidoscope optics. Among his large telescopes is one the size of a room, allowing 20 people to view the 3-D images.
Small kaleidoscopes are popular among collectors as well. Designers such as Carolyn Bennett craft custom kaleidoscopes into sculptures. Many of her designs suit the colors and aesthetics of her customers. While many mass-produced kaleidoscopes can sell for as little as $2, other, more rare ones, have sold at auction for over $75,000.
Art director Antonio Alcalá designed the Kaleidoscope Flower stamps using the art of graphic artists Petra and Nicole Kapitza. Each stamp pictures the same flower shape with different colors, creating the illusion that the patterns recede or move forward.
Value: 46¢ first class letter rate
Issued: January 14, 2013
First Day City: Kansas City, MO
Type of Stamp: Definitive
Printed by: Banknote Corporation of America for Sennett Security Products
Method: Offset printing in coils of 3,000 and 10,000
Perforation: Serpentine Die Cut 11
Quantity Printed: 42,500,000 stamps
The Kaleidoscope Flower stamps continue the U.S.P.S. tradition of picturing beautiful flowers on postage. These stamps were issued in large coils for use by businesses that send large amounts of first-class letters.