Sunday, 12 February 2012

Kinetica Art Fair 2012

Verdict: Go see it
Where: Ambika P3 gallery, Marylebone
When: 9-12 February 2012

The Kinetica Art Fair is a yearly event held by the Kinetica museum to highlight the work of inventors and galleries that bridge the gap between technology and art.  It’s held in the Ambika P3 gallery which is tucked away underneath Westminster University – where you would expect an underground car park to be.

The works include simple yet ingenious student designs such as the light bulbs that light up every time someone tweets about a certain topic – judging by the constantly flickering light bulb for Justin Bieber we now know that the world is doomed.

But there are also some revolutionary technologies on display such as the robots that can mimic or draw your face if you look into their webcams.

There’s a Da Vinci feel to a lot of the stalls with some clever clockwork items on display and complex mechanisms with marbles that feel like an extremely complicated version of the game Mousetrap.

But let’s not forget that this is an art fair and there are plenty of beautiful and surreal uses of technology.  Some notable standouts were:

  • Tim Lewis’s surreal mechanical emu (pictured above) that has stuffed gloves for its head and feet;
  • Karen Neill’s droplet artworks whose bold colours have such impact that Matisse and Klee would approve; and
  • Alexander Berchert’s Water Wheel – who knew gravity and coloured liquids could be so mesmeric (pictured below).

Many of the displays aren’t as polished as they could be, but this only adds to the quirky charm of the fair.

Both children and your inner child will love the contraptions on display and it’s a shame that it’s only on for one weekend.

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