The Virginia Tech School of Architecture + Design, in the College of Architecture and Urban Studies, announces the 25th Anniversary Edition of Olivio Ferrari's toy MASS. MASS is both a measuring tool and an exercise in geometry. Based on the familiar carpenters' measuring rule, its ten foldable parts can be configured into a myriad of shapes and variable lengths. It challenges one to create through play.

This special and limited edition of 300 is produced by Naef Spiele AG in Switzerland. Kurt Naef, a renowned Swiss toy maker, originally hand-crafted Ferrari's design in 1982. The colors are the red and blue of the flag of the Canton of the Ticino, where Virginia Tech has a campus center, the Center for European Studies and Architecture, at Villa Maderni in Riva San Vitale, Switzerland. The cost for MASS is $200, plus postage, handling and tax, if applicable. A total of $140 is a tax deductible contribution.

Ferrari arrived in Blacksburg in 1965, where he developed the architecture foundation program as the first step in a new model of architectural education. He started the summer abroad study program in 1968, which evolved into the Center for European Studies and Architecture in 1991. Ferrari designed three other toys for Naef: Varia, Kyma and Olo. Olo is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York and both Olo and Kyma received the coveted German "Spiel Gut" prize in 1982. A dedicated teacher and gifted designer, he taught at Virginia Tech until his death in 1994.

All proceeds from the sale of the toy will go to the Lucy and Olivio Ferrari Scholarship Fund, which enables students to study abroad. To purchase MASS, please contact: Kid O, 123 West 10th Street, New York, N.Y. 10011, (212) 366-5436, or visit

The College of Architecture and Urban Studies is one of the largest of its type in the nation. The college is composed of three schools and the Department of Art and Art History, part of the multi-college School of the Arts. The School of Architecture + Design includes programs in architecture, industrial design, interior design, and landscape architecture. The School of Public and International Affairs includes programs in urban affairs and planning, public administration and policy, and government and international affairs. The Myers-Lawson School of Construction, a joint school of the College of Architecture and Urban Studies and the College of Engineering, includes programs in building construction and construction management. The college enrolls more than 2,000 students offering 25 degrees taught by 160 faculty members.

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