Architect, designer and university professor, Ernõ Rubik from Budapest, Hungary, created his first working prototype version of the cube in 1974. In 1977 the first ‘Magic Cube’ was sold in a Budapest toy store. By 1980 the Ideal Toy Corporation was exporting the cube worldwide and had rebranded it the ‘Rubik’s Cube’. What followed was a phenomenon that ingrained itself in popular culture with cube variants, books, merchandise, championships and clubs, and even an entry into the Oxford English dictionary!
I was rubbish at trying to solve the cube and slightly envious of those kids at school that could complete it in less than two minutes. I once finished a whole side – but mostly my cube ended up being employed as a psychedelic field table for my Action Man figures. Below is a selection of French promotional adverts for the cube.