I pose a challenge? When was the last time you picked up a Rubik’s Cube and managed the challenge of matching all those colors? I have tried and failed many times. I have been in the Mets and Yankees clubhouses prior to game time. Ballplayers, like you and me, experience a similar frustration.
Though 21-year old Dylan Sadiq, a senior Biomedical Engineering student at Rutgers University, has always accepted the challenge. The Rubik’s Cube has transpired into a cube mosaic that has expanded to the sports world.
Sadiq, in April of last year created his first cube mosaic of NBA player Luka Doncic of the Dallas Mavericks which included purchasing a set of 600 cubes and building a frame. He got it right and the Mavericks reposted his first video which led to more recognition and others in the sports world were impressed.
A challenge as a youngster has quickly developed into another career. Sadiq continues to pursue a college degree with his passion of creating more mosaics of athletes and those involved in sports.
He has already completed a mosaic of Detroit Tigers’ All-Star infielder Miguel Cabrera and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
“I love challenges putting myself in situations,” Sadiq commented to me this week. “I actually had this talent when I was a youngster. I played with Rubik’s when I was younger.”
But the challenge of the Cube has gone to another level that has never been seen before, and it takes time and persistence. He came to the United States with his Mom from Trinidad and Tobago.
“Figured a way I can make something nice out of this, help people grow their audiences with the sports teams,” he explained. ”First doing this for fun. I came up with this idea. Just knew you wanted to do this”
His first project was traveling one weekend from his home in Bayonne, New Jersey to Detroit and working with the NBA Pistons, MLB Tigers and NHL Red Wings. The goal was to create a finished portrait of Ben Wallace, Jared Goff, and Cabrera.
The experience as Sadiq says “Was priceless for me because I can confidently say that I am fully prepared for a project of any size, anywhere in the world.”
His favorite project was working with the MLS New York Red Bulls. A portrait of the Statue of Liberty is permanently displayed in Red Bulls Arena in Harrison, New Jersey. He proudly sees that as the work of an artist.
But this is also a passion for sports as many symbols of art represent teams here and world wide. Except this concept is unique and has become more than a challenge of getting that Rubik Cube to completion.
“I average 20 seconds per cube and takes three hours to finish,” he says with confidence. “I look at photos online, their social media. Several hours before it begins. Once I’m prepared to begin it takes me three hours at that point.”
However, the entire project involves five or ten hours of concentration and of course the motivation to complete this new challenge with the cubes. It’s comparable to an athlete and perfecting his or her craft on the field, court, or in a boxing ring.
This could have easily been a fun experience and challenge. However, in the past few months more teams have picked up on the concept and contacted this new artist of the cube mosaic and the videos are increasing that awareness. It is quickly becoming a full time business, in between completing the college degree.
“They want me to post me on their social media,” Sadiq says. “I increase their engagement and grow their audience. I am sitting here and say why do teams want me to make the videos?”
He is also offering in person live performances as the work is being done. A few weeks ago, the Professional Bull Riders came to New York at Madison Square Garden, and there was Dylan Sadiq working on a piece of his art.
At MetLife Stadium last month, prior to the Army-Navy football game, there was Dylan Sadiq and a live performance of art and the cube mosaic. He doesn’t charge fans for a live performance and collects his financial award with commissions.
You can’t learn this in one day. Dylan and the cubes have been a learning process since the age of ten. Practice has created this perfection and the learning process continues as fans comment on his social media pages about the impressive work.
“The people at sporting events appreciate my art work,” he says. “If you are coming to a sporting event, you see something like this, you walk into the stadium, you can say ‘holy crap.’”
He encourages fans to come early to attend one of his events as the artist goes to work.
“Sports is where I started and sports is what I love,” he says. “I’m gonna stay there for now. All my fans are sports fans.” And now the Rubik’s Cube challenge has a new perspective.
To know more about Dylan Sadiq, his work, and where he will be log on to his social media: thecollege cuber.com @the collegecuber: Tik Tok, Instagram, Twitter
Rich Mancuso: Twitter@Ring 786 Facebook.com/Rich Mancuso