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Fellow student creates portrait of Caitlin Clark with Rubik’s Cubes

Fellow student creates portrait of Caitlin Clark with Rubik’s Cubes
Posted at 11:15 AM, Apr 04, 2024

A University of Iowa student has created a unique piece of art to celebrate Iowa women’s basketball guard Caitlin Clark’s record-breaking scoring record.

While watching Clark’s record-breaking season this year, dental student Brian Dang created a mosaic of the NCAA star using Rubik’s Cubes.

Why Rubik’s Cubes? Dang told the Iowa City Press-Citizen that while he used to be able to solve Rubik’s Cubes in a few hours, he eventually got it down to minutes and can now solve on in seconds. After becoming an expert at the puzzle, he moved onto using them in a different way when he became interested in three-dimensional art.

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Iowa Hawkeyes guard Caitlin Clark
Matthew Putney / AP

The portrait of Clark began by pixelating a photo of her, followed by formatting the placement of each cube in an Excel spreadsheet.

“A Rubik’s Cube doesn’t give you many colors to work with,” Dang said. “So you really have to plan out how you want to make the picture pop out with all the contrast.”

The College of Dentistry and Dental Clinics at the University of Iowa says the art piece is made with 720 cubes and took Dang a week to complete. The college shared the finished piece on Facebook:

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Dang says he made the portrait after Clark broke the NCAA women’s scoring record, which happened when the basketball star took a shot from around 35 feet out and made the basket in a game against the Michigan Wolverines in February.

Clark scored 49 points during that game alone, which lead the team to a win of 106-89. You can see the moment Clark broke the record in a clip from the University of Iowa:

Students usually don’t have a lot of spare cash on hand, and buying 720 Rubik’s Cubes to make the portrait wasn’t cheap. But Dang told the Press-Citizen that he brought the cost down by buying them in bulk for less than $1 each. All of those cubes add up in another way, too.

“It’s pretty heavy,” Dang said. “I go to the gym, I work out, and I would say it’s about 20 to 25 pounds or more.”

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