Saturday, January 24, 2009

Look It's Moving!


As a child I loved these little pinwheels. Running outside, holding my treasure up to the breeze, those few still seconds of anticipation before the wheel started to spin, and then, wonder. My first experiences with this kinetic piece ensured a lifelong fascination with inanimate objects that move.

Kinetic art explores how things look when they move and refers mostly to sculptured works. The movement is not virtual or illusory, but a real movement that might be created by a motor, water, wind or even a button pushed by the viewer.

We don't usually associate the online handmade store, Etsy, with huge pieces. But Jason Stillman of Grace Gallery has listed The Evolution of Flora, a large steel fabricated, kinetic sculpture. It measures approximately 10-11 ft tall, by about 6 -7 feet at its most wide. The piece has multiple parts that move; the flower petals spin, and the leaves flutter in the breeze. For those living in the US this piece is mighty tempting. If you go to Jason's website you can see it moving!


I'm a real fan of Sydney artist Don Pezzano's mixed media pieces and Fantasy Orrery (solar system model) doesn't disappoint. Made from junk, scrap metal, buttons, wire, typewriter parts, sewing machine parts, brass spheres, coin, paper, timber, seed pod and paint, it has a real steampunk flavor. Don has just started selling on Etsy so check out his Store.


There are some art galleries that focus solely on kinetic art. A Google search will find these. Most though seem to show the occasional piece. Place Gallery in Melbourne has allowed Australian artist, Cameron Robbins, to install his kinetic sculpture Within Without . On the rooftop, a 'wind monitor' responds to the elements, and transfers kinetic energy through axles into the gallery two floors below. There the energy operates a drawing machine, marking time and wind energy to create a series of site-specific works.




Some artists work only in this genre. Check out this whimsical Brass Dragon by the UK's Keith Newstead. And visit his website for more enchanting pieces.


Something a bit more achievable for most of us are air generated mobiles.


If you enjoy sewing you might like to attempt the bird mobile from Spool Sewing. A pattern is available for download here. If wood or paper work is more your style, Instructables have a few mobile patterns with varying degrees of difficulty.

Or maybe just whip out some paper, a split pin and a straw and make yourself a pinwheel!

28 comments:

lyptis said...

Hi sweetie!
yea no drama in good old nz!
thanks for welcoming me back!

Great blog post! funny thing is, my bf has been looking at steam punk sculptures today and stuff and i told him to look at moving stuff, he looked at a lot of wind moving sculptures and this creepy huge wind horn, which made the craziest noises!
love ya!
fran

Ro Bruhn said...

I love visiting here, you must spend a lot of time searching for such wonderful images and information, these are all wonderful, thanks for putting in the effort so that those of us who aren't quite as good at finding things get to se them too.

*~tabby~* crooked heart art said...

hmm i hope this does not come thru twice..
but
yours is such a neat blog chrisy
the colors of the pinwheels are stunning
thank you for sharing your finds
enjoy your day
tabby :)

nuvonova said...

OH.MY.GOD.

Evolution of Flora is breathtaking! .. I could see that being used as a prop in some sort of fantasy narnia/lord of the rings type film.. wow I want it!

RocketGirl said...

You might be interested in the work of Semir Zeki- investigating the idea that artists are neuroscientists in a sense- that art (including kinetic) has developed over time to become more and more in line with processing in the human visual system. So artists, by finding which stimuli are aesthetically pleasing, are at the same time finding the stimuli that our visual system is most precisely tuned to. ;)

High Desert Diva said...

There's something about sculptures that move, whether intricately detailed, or a simple mobile...love 'em.

Hey Harriet said...

Love that first photo! Great post! You've got me all fired up to make pinwheels now!

Malene said...

Truly amazing pieces. I especially like the dragon!

Burgandy said...

Love kinetic. There is an artist on Orcas island in the San Juans here that makes kinetic art. There is one stretch of roadway that has his art all over and it is so amazing. Enough to make me drive off the road because I can't stop watching them.
Ha ha ha. Anyways I have ben tagged and I am now tagging you. Check out the tagged post on my blog to see what it's all about.

edward and lilly said...

This is great, I really enjoy popping in here and having a good read. I just gave you an award over on my blog :)

Don said...

Cool! That dragon is mad. Thanks for showing my stuff!

Linda S. Socha said...

How have I missed this!! I used to dream of creativn kinetic art Great post and well written. THANKS
Stop by at a visit at Psyche Connections
I love meeting new art oriented folks. I have a creativity post you might enjoy. I like exchanging blog following links if you have an interest
Linda

Charli said...

This is a great post. Thanks for this fun stuff! I love the pinwheel picture. I can't imagine making kinetic art. Too complicated for me. But I love to look at it!

Finki (jay) said...

What wonderful representation of art. I have such a thing for trees, the amazing work in steel just looks like it's ready to take a step forward. Lucky I don't live in the US, otherwise I'd be figuring out somewhere I could make it fit.

Joy Logan said...

What a fun blog and very nice header! I will be back,found you on Ro's site.

Scarlette Rose Fairy said...

such a gorgeous colourful photo, i loved those spinning things as a kid, i'm sure they would bring everyone lots of sweet memories!! X.x.

NeverEverEmma said...

As a child I too loved pinwheels. I had a blue and a pink one that were never far away.

When I visited China in 2006, for Chinese New Year, I was thrilled to find that they use them a lot for celebration - i purchased many while I was there! Guess it wasn't only a childish thing!

ArtSnark said...

Fabulous post!

Maria said...

What great art to see in here! I love the lamps and the kinetic sculptures.

Maria

REread said...

that bird mobile rocks ... i so wnat to make one!!!

Vegan and Vintage said...

Thank you so much for the lovely comments on my blog!

Your blog is amazing! thank you for finding me so that I could fnd you.

I can see how much time, effort, thought and passion goes into every post, well done!

Jill said...

I love that bird mobile - I'm thinking of making one for my first niece/nephew. I love pinwheels too! :)

Cathy said...

Hi, I just wanted to let you know that you've been tagged :), If you need info on how this works feel free to check out my blog post on it.
Thanks!

thula thula designer said...

I'm off to make these birds, miss Madeline will love this. It maybe 11pm, but the sewing machine is now calling! Where do you find these things? Love it.

Natalia said...

Never a disappointment - always a great read - thanks for the wonderful post!

helena said...

oh wow!! i'm finding so much lovely things to read in your blog! i love it! i love this post, there's definitely something magical about pinwheels and hanging mobiles!

xxx helena

www.littlemoandfriends.com/blog

Bec said...

There is something a little bit magical about kinetic sculptures...
For a while there we had a heap of pinwheels and a huge rainbow wind sock stuck over the outside of the kids' cubby house, and it always put a huge smile on my face every time I looked at it. But now I'm thinking maybe we have to add another oh, hundred or so, and cover every spare inch of it - now that would look great :D

Renee said...

Chrisy that mirror tree was amazing. Also I love that fabric bird.

By the way, about the nagging. I care about you too.

Love Renee xoxo