Thursday, June 21, 2012

"The Last Prussian Conjurer " automaton magician by Thomas Kuntz

Sculptor and automaton artist, Thomas Kuntz, has just finished a new piece called The Last Prussian Conjurer. Like many of his pieces, this one performs a magic trick. Keep your eye on the ball!

From the artist's description:

Inspired in part by WW1 anti-war and allied propaganda art. Additional inspiration came from the Diableries/Totentanz traditions with a healthy dose of Dada, Hans Richter and Monty Python!

Kuntz is both a masterful sculptor and accomplished machinist. This means that everything in the piece was made from scratch -- the figure, brass cams, levers and all. Even the spike on the Prussian's helmet was made from brass turned on an antique precision watchmaker's lathe. A part of the cam making process is shown in the video, as is his fantastic original clay sculpture.

Photograph of conjurer automaton

Propaganda art can be so exaggerated and direct in its message. I can see why it might inspire an automaton. To see what I mean, check out these books and posters showing WWI propaganda art.

See more automata by Thomas Kuntz on his web site.

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