Artist Juan Fontanive (previously) constructs perpetually looping flip book machines that depict flying birds lifted from audubon guides and illustrations of butterflies. Part film and part sculpture, almost every aspect of the flip books are assembled by hand from the minutely toothed gears, clips, nuts, bolts, wormwheels and sprockets to the carefully screen printed imagery. Of the curious devices Gild Williams remarked, “Fontanive’s artworks seem strangely possessed, producing curiously moving animals that are neither living nor dead, or creating ghostly systems which seem to float mid-air and follow a pace and logic of their own.” You can see much more of his work over at Riflemaker.
Artist Theo Jansen has created several 3D printed models of his famous walking sculptures called Strandbeests. There are currently four different models and two alternate propeller attachments for added Strandbeest goodness. Available over at Shapeways.
I’m digging this kinetic sculpture by Swiss artist Markus Raetz (previously) that creates the illusion of a rotating head using a series of silhouettes cut from metal panels. Most of Raetz’s work involves aspects of perception and illusion, more of which you can see here. (via Sploid)
The Creator’s Project recently visited with kinetic sculptor Anthony Howe who creates kinetic artworks powered by wind. You might remember Howe from a piece here on Colossal back in July. Watch the video above to learn more about his artistic philosophy and watch some excellent footage of his hypnotic sculptures.
For the last decade, self-confessed tinkerer and “organic mechanic” Blair Somerville has owned and operated the Lost Gypsy Gallery, a sprawling menagerie of kinetic sculptures, automata, and electronic doohickies. Located in in a remote corner of New Zealand’s South Island, the gallery has become Somerville’s life work, a testament to artistic ingenuity, and an offbeat tourist attraction where visitors can experience first-hand his interactive “Fine Acts of Junk”.
Filmmaker Joey Bania takes us inside this enchanting yet totally bizarre wonderland in his new documentary short Lost & Found, funded in part by BBC Worldwide Young Producers’ grant. NSFW-ish language here and there.
Some of most amazing contemporary artists working in the realm of optical illusion have been brought together for a fantastic show called Illusion at Science Gallery in Dublin, Ireland. Curated by psychologist and author Richard Wiseman and researched by magician and escapologist (!) Paul Gleeson, the exhibition explores the myriad ways the mind is tricked through sensory deception. The show includes works from Roseline de Thelin, Gregory Barsamian, Matt Kenyon, Jonty Hurwitz (previously), and many more. Illusion runs through September 29, 2013.
Onithology. Collage on asuka and watercolor paper, stainless steel, motor and electronics. 2013.
Colibri. Graphite and colored pencil on paper, stainless steel, delrin, motor, electronics. 2011.
Violetear. Acrylic and graphite on paper, stainless steel, delrin, aluminum, motor and electronics. 2011.
Since graduating from the Royal College of Art, artist Juan Fontanive has been exploring moving images and kinetic sculptures. My favorite of his lastest works are these three flipbook machines using drawings, acrylic paintings, and collages of birds. Two of the original machines above, Ornithology and Colibri are currently available through the New Museum.
Korean artist U-Ram Choe lives and works in Seoul where he creates highly ornate kinetic sculptures that mimic forms and motions found in nature. Choe uses various metals, motors, gears, and custom CPU boards to control the precise motions of each sculpture that are at times perfectly synchronized and other times completely random. With names like “Unicus – cavum ad initium” and “Arbor Deus Pennatus” it’s clear the artist treats each new work like a brand new species.
The artworks are so complex each “organism” is shipped with a manual to show collectors and galleries how to maintain and fix various components. Choe tells the Creator’s Project in one of the videos above how some of the works in his studio live a complete lifecycle where they are at first born and put on display, but after time begin to degrade as certain parts stop working. Eventually he raids old artworks for parts and uses them to build new ones.
Watch the videos above to see a good sampling of his work both old and new, and he has a huge archive of videos for nearly 50 artworks over on Vimeo.