PENTHOUSE THEORY 101: GUIDE TO BE@RBRICKS
WHAT EXACTLY IS A BEARBRICK (BE@RBRICK) ?
The Bearbrick may look like an ordinary toy at first glance. However, you'd be surprised to how much of importance this "plastic bear-shaped figurine" will unfold to many collectors. This is simply not for child's play.
Designed and produced by Medicom Toy Inc, BE@RBRICKS are a series of teddy bear-shaped designer toys that comes in various sizes, colors and design. (We'll get more into that later).
BE@RBRICKS features a well-articulated potbelly, comprising of nine different parts such as the head, torso, hips, arms, hands, and legs with joints all able to swivel.
Medicom Toys was founded in 1996 by Tatsuhiko Akashi, a company that is best known for its plastic figurines, releasing many limited edition figures and licensed products since its inception.
Back in the 2000s, Medicom Toys had an extremely popular plastic figurine toy — known as the Kubrick, which bore a huge resemblance to human form. Its popularity grew so much so that the organizers from the World Character Convention in Tokyo approached Akashi to come up with a toy as a gift for the attendees.
Akashi popped a bear head on top of the Kubrick figure and just like that, BE@RBRICK was formed.
The end result? Streetwear nirvana.
The Bearbrick—half-bear, half-pot-belled-Kubrick, one of the most confounding creations ever— was released May 27, 2001 and given out as a free gift to attendees of the World Character Convention in Tokyo, Japan.
Today, these vinyl toys have become canvases for modern expression, playing a crucial role in the intersection of style, art and fashion. In fact, it wouldn’t be so far-fetched to say that it almost single-handedly carved out the fad of toy collecting in modern times, treading the very fine line between toy and art. Since its inception, BE@RBRICKs have become one of the most recognizable characters in the world, and some of the most sought after.