PLACES TO SEE AUTOMATA
Don’t forget to check our exhibitions page for details of current CMT exhibitions.
Sharmanka Theatre – Glasgow
The amazing machines of Eduard Bersudsky are definitely worth a visit. Sharmanka are based in Glasgow.
The Modern Automata Museum – Italy
This new museum curated by Guido Accascina has work by many automata makers. Paul Spooner’s Turkish Bath can be seen there, along with work from Keith Newstead and Peter Markey.
Many of Tim Hunkin’s coin-ops from CMT (including the Doctor and the Chiropodist) can now be seen at Southwold Pier in Suffolk. Will Jackson’s Crankenstein and Brainwash are also there.
The Eden Project
If you visit the Eden Project in Cornwall make sure to see all the incredible automata exhibits created by Engineered Arts, featuring the work of Will Jackson, Paul Spooner, Rob Higgs et al.
Arima Toys and Automata Museum
This wonderful exhibition of Toys and Automata in Kobe, Japan was opened by our good friend and automata maker the late Aquio Nishida.
Cox’s Swan, Barnard Castle
The Silver Swan, a very well known piece of automata is housed in the Bowes Musuem in the town of Barnard Castle, near Darlington. You can read more details on the site but unfortunately they seem to have removed the video of the swan working. Here’s a youtube version and a photo on the wikipedia entry.
The House of Automata
Michael and Maria Start run The House of Automata, the UK’s only specialist Automata restoration company. Specializing in the conservative restoration of antique automata and singing birds our restoration work preserves the value and magic of the piece whilst restoring the full function and music.
The Puppetry Home Page
Puppetry, Automata, Animation, Animatronics and much more. A very comprehensive site. Lots of links.
Rolling Ball Machines
Website devoted to the subject of Rolling Ball Sculptures, curious machines, mechanical sculptures and other moving art.
Rube Goldberg is the US version of Heath Robinson (don’t know why we haven’t got any Heath Robinson links!). A young boy has built this site dedicated to the cartoonist of crazy mechanical machines. It has links to lots of other sites.
Automata – France
Museum of old automata. Le Musée de l’Automate de Souillac vous propose une des plus importantes collection d’Europe d’automates et jouets mécaniques anciens.
Craig W. Reynolds – USA
The other world of automata which mainly resides within computers. Simulations of life and all that stuff. Connected but totally different, or similar but unconnected perhaps. Anyway, this is a good place to start if you’re interested.
As well as covering robot books, this site also has robot news and links. They have a Mechanics section which lists some hard to find books on mechanisms.
An extensive site with lots of links to anthropomorphic robots, animatronics, walking machines and related things.
Jim Bond – UK
Jim Bond is a mechanical sculptor who works mainly in metal, and scrap materials. He has recently taken part in Channel 4′s Scrapheap Challenge.
Chomick & Meder – USA
Art Dolls and Automata. Nice site with some animations of their mechanical dolls.
Faulty Optic – UK
Automata makers usually prefer to let motors or other people to do the work but this original puppet theatre company are world renowned for their haunting visual theatre, automated sets, strange animated figures, cronked inventions and macabre humour.
Duane Flatmo – USA
Maker of big kinetic sculpture racing machines.
Bernward Frank – Germany
Wind and Water Sculptures. Some virtual (computer animations) and some real.
Steve Gerberich – USA
Gerb-O-Matic – the quirky world of Steve Gerberich, who turns everyday objects into wonderfully bizarre mechanical creations.
Tom Haney – USA
Maker of modern automata, Tom Haney has been creating figurative, kinetic pieces that operated by keys, cranks, weights, wind-up and electric motors since 1994. His site includes many movies and in-progress shots of his work.
Marc Horowitz – USA
See pieces like the Blunt-horn Ox. You can also buy work in kit form.
Roggeri Joffe Toymakers
Not all mechanical but including some whirligigs and balancing toys. Animations of toys and drawings.
Dug North – USA
Maker of original contemporary automata, Dug North likes to use wood and a bit of brass to create humorous scenes. He also enjoys the challenge of creating automata that perform surprising tricks.
Julie S. Porter – USA
A maker of clocks and automata. You can see some of her work and also her translations of Le monde des automates by Alfred Chapuis and Edward Gelis, including a description of the Jaquet-Droz musician.
Tim Prentice – USA
“His materials include: steel, aluminium, lexan and feathers … all in service of a simple principle: To reveal through the moving sculptural form, the invisible movements of the air, and the magical relationship between object and environment.”
David C. Roy – USA
Kinetic Sculpture. Mostly abstract wooden wall hangings. Nicely laid-out site with animations.
Martin Smith – UK
We’ve been selling Martin’s work for a few years. Now he has his own web site where you can see animations of some of his pieces.
Steve Stackpole – USA
Along with the mechanics, Steve uses wit, whimsicality, and maybe a little sarcasm, to comment on human foibles, and the frequent insanity of life.
Survival Research Labs – USA
We tend to get upset if our machines thrash themselves to death but these boys relish in it. Connected but totally different from most of the above.
Jean Tinguely – Swiss
The grandaddy of kinetic sculpture is finally represented on the net because they built a museum for his work.
The card cut-outs of Rob Ives. Free downloads, making tips, animations and lots more.
Card Modelling FAQ
The Card Modeling FAQ is devoted to the construction of models (static and dynamic) in paper and cardstock. Very extensive FAQ with lots of links and useful tips on construction.
Design & Technology
Barstable school. Follow the link to the Design and Technology department. Lots of links.
Virtual Mechanisms – Java animations of mechanisms working.
South London Science & Technology Centre
This site includes plenty of well-priced resources for teachers – including a very simple cam-driven crocodile in kit form for primary schools.