Posted by baykiddead July 06, 2011

No, these aren't big monkeys. In fact, they're bees. Ape [pronounced ah-peh] is Italian for bee. The Ape is a three-wheel vehicle that traces its roots back to a post-war Italy looking for a way out of the financial hardship that hit most of the country. Conceived of in 1947 by Corradino D'Ascanio [who hipsters should recognize as the inventor of the Vespa] and built by Piaggio, the Ape quickly became a critical piece of the plan to rebuild Italy's economy.

The jack-of-all-trades style of the Ape inspired Vinsart to come up with a toy illustrating its multiple uses. He originally conceived them for tasks as diverse as a sushi delivery cart, cigarette smuggler, guerilla-style gun truck, and even a hearse. For the most recent series though, he's asked other designers to come up with ways in which his little bee can be put to use. In all, there are ten new visions of what the Ape can do, as told by some of paper's most imaginative minds. Abz, Marko Zubak, Salazad, Horrorwood, and Scott Charron are just half of this roster, and their designs do D'Ascanio proud. 

I don't know what Vinsart is Italian for, but in my dictionary, cool is part of the definition. What's also cool, is that all of these designs are free. Yes, free. So in addition to the history lesson, you also get 10 awesome [if I do say so myself...] pieces of art to transform that boring shelf in your guest room into a gallery of, well, awesome!

You can get them all HERE.



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