Kinetic sculpture takes a page from modern life

The blurry image above is a snap of toy cars as they zoom around a multi-lane, multi-level, maniacal-maze called Metropolis II. We originally took a look at the video after the break (do it now!) but found more information on [Chris Burden’s] kenetic sculpture in this NYT article. He and eight studio artists began work on the project back in 2006. They built 1200 custom designed cars and gave them a huge city to traverse, with up to 18 lanes at times. The work is not yet done, and the video below is dated (having been filmed in 2009), but project is slated to conclude in about two months and the installation has already been snapped up by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

And here we thought this was the product of an out-of-work packaging system design engineer. Nope, it’s art, and it certainly eclipses other kinetic sculptures we’ve seen.

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New term for art: Sculptural Robotics

[Dan Roe] has been working on Sculptural Robotics for quite some time, and most recently presented his newest creation: Solar Flowers 2010. Typically, Sculptural Robotics (coined by [Dan] himself) are stand alone, static art presentations made from electronic components and wire. [Dan] of course has taken it quite a bit further; giving all his sculptures life using solar panels, motors, engine circuits, and more. Making them zero emission, and beautiful at the same time. You can catch four videos after the jump of his moving sculptures. Not that we’re picking favorites, but the dragonfly is pretty amazing if we do say so ourselves.

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Perpetual Ball Roller

This interesting little sculpture caught our eye. Called the Perpetual Ball Roller, it simply rolls a ball on a track. It has both manual and automatic modes with variations in the automatic mode to keep it amusing. This is very elegant, and would be fun to have sitting around to play with. The only problem is the noise. The servo that he is using is quite loud. What could he do to make it function silently?

[via Instructables]

WEEE Man

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WEEE Man is an art display that has been roving around England. No, he doesn’t walk or talk. He is here to remind us of how wasteful we can be. Hackers rejoice, we’re part of the solution. It also doesn’t hurt that he is Seven Meters tall and over three tons. WEEE Man looks awesome, but are we the only ones that spotted stuff and thought “ooh, I could have used that for a cool project.”?

[via The Presurfer]

Advanced Beauty generative video art

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Advanced Beauty is a collection of 18 “sound sculptures” pairing artists and programmers to create a collaborative work visualizing sound. The styles run a broad range from fluid simulations to manipulating cell animation. The demos were built using Processing. While all of these were built using human input, we see potential for them to help improve standard visualizers. Hopefully, to bring out more information about what’s actually being played. Below is just one of the videos in the series. You can find more on Vimeo. Continue reading “Advanced Beauty generative video art”

Asymmetric gear heart sculpture

Here’s a video of a mindbending piece of papercraft engineering. We’d love to see a 3D model for this heart to at least have a starting point when designing our own. The creator’s site is in Japanese though, so it’s hard to glean any insight into his process. Embedded below is a similar cube version. Continue reading “Asymmetric gear heart sculpture”

Shih Chieh Huang’s recycled bots


We’re really sorry to have missed GLOW. It was a unique all-night art and music event that took place the evening of July 19, 2008, in Santa Monica, and lasted until dawn. We were most intrigued by [Shih Chieh Huang]’s haunting robotic sculptures. They were eerily beautiful, and appeared to be alive and “breathing”. He took some unusual materials – plastic bags and bottles, computer fans and circuit boards, among others, and combined them all to give the creatures otherworldly auras. Simultaneously familiar and strange, the sculptures are designed to evoke marine life, yet they’re completely different, in both materials and structure. More coverage and pictures of the event can be found at LAist, NOTCOT, and on Flickr.