"Forever Pizza" by
Steph Mantis Studio

History of Forever Pizza

Everything I know in life is because of pizza. My family has owned and operated Pizza by Alex in Biddeford, ME for generations, so I was raised completely immersed in pizza culture. Growing up, pizza provided income, but as an artist it provides inspiration, so pizza has nourished me in a lot of ways.

I moved to New York to study product design at Pratt Institute, and I was right at home in the city that is essentially our nation's pizza capital. The Forever Slice was born in 2012 as my answer to the American Design Club's curated show called "Threat." Designers were asked to design hypothetical objects of defense that would protect them from intruders in the middle of the night. Since every night of my life is a pizza party, I thought, "I'd take last night's hard, leftover slice and throw it at an intruder like a ninja star." But since you can't really submit a dried up slice of pizza to an art show, I thought I'd encase the pizza in resin.

That was how Forever Pizza started, but it turned out to be just the beginning. The resin had this quality of making the pizza slice an object of nostalgia, of history, of an iconic monument to our culture's reverence for pizza as a food. It's also an homage to my dad. Pizza is personal. I keep coming back to it because it means something to me.

FAQ's about Forever Pizza

Can I open it? And take out the pizza?
-NO.

Can I melt the resin to get to the pizza?
-NO.

Can I eat it later?
-NO.

Why can't I eat the pizza? Or get it out?
-Because it's in resin, as in solid plastic, as in toxic. And it will never come out. Ever.

Is this functional?
-YES. Art is functional. It moves us and inspires us. Also the Forever Slice is really good at sitting on table tops, being a conversation starter. Live with it and see what happens.

Where are the giant Pizza Ninja Stars? Can I buy them?
-The Pizza Ninja Stars are currently being housed at the world's first pizza museum, Pizza Brain, in Philadelphia, PA. You should go there, for sure. And maybe you can buy them, but let's talk about it.

How big are the slices?
-Not that big. My family only sells one size pie; a personal 10 inch pie. So your resin blocked out slice is 5 inches crust to point. This is NOT a full sized NY slice.

FAQ's about Forever Pizza Delivery

When can I have my Forever Slice?
-I don't know yet.

You really don't know when they're gonna be ready?
-NO. REALLY. Sorry.

You're the artist. Why don't you know when they'll be done?
-In a very short time, I've gone from making Forever Slices one pizza at a time to having to respond to an incredible demand for more Forever Slices than I've ever imagined. I'm VERY grateful for this to have happened, but it means I have to change the way I work a bit. The quality and integrity of my work is paramount. I won't cut corners. That's why this is taking awhile.

Normally, Forever Slices are made a pie at a time. That's 8 slices. Each pie takes about 4 weeks of turnaround time: 1 week to prep the pizza, 1 week to pour the resin, 1 week for the resin to harden, and 1 week to ship. Multiply that times a thousand orders times 4 weeks per pie... and I'd literally be pouring Forever Slices for hundreds of years (I did the math). It's an amazing problem to have, and so as a one-woman operation I have to look into larger scale production methods, hiring help, etc. It takes time to perfect those details, so I appreciate your patience as everything gets sorted out! Once the final process is solid, you'll be the first to know. Promise. Sign up for the Waiting List below for updates!

Ok then, how much do the slices cost?
-I don't know yet.

ARE YOU SERIOUS? WHY NOT!?
-SEE ABOVE. About the whole large-scale production thing. I won't know how much each slice costs until I've finalized how they're are made. Sorry again.

This is dumb. Waiting is the worst.
-I know. There's nothing I can say that can make that better. But in the meantime, if you like, you can check out some other pizza-related goodies like my Pizza Pack, the Pizza Toppings T-Shirt , or any of the other products I designed for Kikkerland. Or just stay tuned and know that you are contributing to the greater good of society by supporting a small business owned by an independent artist.

You've got me there, Mantis.
- MANIACAL LAUGH!

Steph Mantis is a Brooklyn-based artist, designer, and creative consultant. Raised in her family's pizzeria in Maine, her work explores the relationships between food, object and culture. Educated at Pratt Institute and the Danish Design School, she has collaborated with numerous institutions including Pizza Brain Pizza Museum, MoFAD, Kikkerland Design, Scott's Pizza Tours, Slice Out Hunger, and SVA's BioArt Lab. She is currently a part time lecturer at The New School and maintains a studio at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

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