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July 11, 2008

Theo Jansen's walking sculptures


(thanks to AxelHH for the photograph)
Theo Jansen is a Dutch artist who builds enormous, walking sculptures powered by the wind. He calls this type of creature a Strandbeest- 'beach animal'. I first saw these sculptures in a South African BMW advert (watch it here). Theo talks about his sculptures at the TED conference, and you can watch that video or download it here.

The question is, would it be possible to pioneer one of these out of ropes and poles? Theo uses PVC tubing, and works to very precise measurements for the legs of these creatures. But considering that he has also built a creature called Animaris Rhinoceros out of steel, it might just be possible. Mekanizmalar has an incredible animation of the walking mechanism, that lets you play around with different lengths of the various parts, for those who want to experiment. Any takers?
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