HQ CMT is a secret central London location known only to a few thousand cognoscenti, and they all seemed to be there for the Christmas spell casting. This is where making magic is serious fun, and the CMT Christmas gathering is the summit meeting for devoted funsters. I’m not talking about magic tricks, sleight of hand and now-you-see-now-you-don’t; this is about pure ingenuity, Magic Circle rules do not apply. Read more
As we come to the last evening of the Magic of Cabaret, we wish you a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
We hope you have enjoyed the evenings and we look forward to catching up with you in 2010. We have new exhibitions opening in Woodstock – Oxfordshire, Miami – Florida, and Tel Aviv.
Click here to look back over the last 39 days.
Dr. Stephen Guy has been busy this year with several collaborative automata projects, which may inspire you to get creative with your friends.
Last month Stephen inspired prospective theatre design students with this wonderful idea for a workshop. Students all made their own pieces, and then by clever mechanical connections, all the automata were joined together and one turn of the handle set them all in motion.
Stephen’s mechanical theatre performance of The London Jungle Book, featuring Indian Gond Art by Bhaju Shyam, was so popular at our exhibition in Granada that they have been invited back to do a closing performance in January.
Following on from this work, Stephen also inspired another Gond artist to make his first piece of automata.
December 19, 2009 by sarah · Comments Off
This Saturday we have some more entertainment from Michael and Maria Start.
A completely traditional flea circus called ‘Circus Maximus’ featuring acts of skill and daring performed by trained Fleas. Beginning with Hestor Walenda in a nerve racking high wire and trapeze act and featuring Ignatius P. the Fire eating flea. Dr. Flea and his glamorous assistant MammaMia encourage and introduce the highly trained troupe through 10 classic circus acts, the Grand Finale being when Taki Fontana is shot from a Cannon.
Rest assured, no fleas are harmed during the performance, they actually enjoy the discipline of performing.
To end this evening we have The Magic Book Part 2 from Michael and Maria.
December 18, 2009 by sarah · Comments Off
Now is the time to start thinking about how you are going to open your wine and nuts over the festive season. Look no further! We have two ingenious devices to show you from artist and automata maker Rob Higgs.
We know that these two are a bit on the large size but enjoy watching them anyway!
December 17, 2009 by sarah · Comments Off
The Sawing a Lady in half is a classic trick, the lady gets sawn in half before your very eyes (strong glasses may be required in some cases) or The Conjurer will pull a rabbit out of a hat. Operated by tiny wire handles, these are real conversation pieces.
These wonderful pieces are made by Angela and Laurence St Leger and we have been selling their work for over 20 years. The St Leger’s started off making miniatures for dolls houses, and the experimented with moving toy miniatures – their first design was Samson The Strong Man. They now have over 150 in their repertoire and rumour has it that astronaut and automata collector Richard Garriott took one into space with him.
December 16, 2009 by sarah · Comments Off
This evening we bring you another magnificent large automaton. Tonight’s is from Keith Newstead, who has just finished this version of the Temptation of Saint Anthony, and was inspired by Dali’s painting of the supernatural scene, (below).
In Keith’s new version, Saint Anthony is found in a modern day desert setting, complete with crumbling devilish graffiti. His temptation comes in the form of a dancing girl, carried on the back of the wonderful spider-legged elephant.
23 cm deep
35 cm wide
December 15, 2009 by sarah · Comments Off
An unfortunate employee of the British East India Company is being savaged by a vicious tiger. Above him his fellow soldiers are on a campaign of war against the Indian Kingdom of Mysore, and further up we see the Sultan of Tipu, who was very fond of tigers, turning the handle of his own Tiger automaton.
December 14, 2009 by sarah · Comments Off
Action. On turning the handle, the snorkeller undertakes an urgent and thorough search into all four corners of his patch of sea.
Caption on label “A lone snorkeller quarters a turquoise sea. The tropical hardwoods used in this piece have been responsibly harvested from antique furniture”.
Only 4 available.
December 13, 2009 by sarah · Comments Off
This androgynous piece was originally a one-off by Paul Spooner which graced the entrance of the Cabaret Mechanical Theatre in Covent Garden, splendid in it’s glass dome. The movement is derived from the rotating pelvis, (which is where all the best movements start,) and the face of the figure is reminiscent of the emcee of the Kit Kat Club in the film ‘Cabaret’ – so as they say.. ‘Wilkommen, Bienvenue, Welcome, in Cabaret, au Cabaret, to Cabaret!
£350 (excl. VAT)