Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Puppet Theater

During the past two years I have been building model theaters of various sorts (mostly toy theaters).  I'm not sure why I was so compelled to build them.  It's probably because they are like dioramas - they contain small worlds going about their own business while oblivious to the rest of the world around them.

I did this puppet theater as a static piece, but then having become interested in automata, I modified it to create moving puppets.  I'm using the term automata loosely to describe this piece.  Automata  technically describes a self moving machine (including wind-ups), but I've seen it used to describe crank turning objects (like this) where turning the crank causes movement.   If anyone can expand on the topic of  automata (or wants to make any corrections), please do.

This theater is made primarily of cherry, mahogany and walnut.  A friend of mine, Cassandra Saulter, who works with cloth, made the curtains.

click to enlarge photos

This was the model before the curtains and movement mechanism,
 and with some background scenery

Here are a few shots of the construction in process:

One cam inserted

Both cams and the turn handle added

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