Awesome Kinetic

The Fragility of Complexity

The Fragility of Complexity

Illustrating just how interdependent the world has become, artist Neil Mendoza built The Fragility of Complexity, a motorized, kinetic art installation composed of a row of hammers that rotate perilously close to a series of moving light bulbs. Neil says only a single light bulb was broken during its construction.

SpinLaunch Centrifugal Rocket Launcher

SpinLaunch Centrifugal Rocket Launcher

Aerospace company SpinLaunch wants to launch rockets without rocket fuel. Their system uses an electric centrifuge to fling rockets up to 5000 mph. They plan to use the tech to put small satellites into low-earth orbit with less environmental impact and cost than current methods. On 10.22.21, they completed a suborbital test.

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Cosmic Eye Kinetic Plaything

Cosmic Eye Kinetic Plaything

Artist and engineer Robert Spillner created this unique plaything – a disc filled with a sparkly fluid that looks like an atmosphere swirling around a planet. As you shake and move the disc, the metallic liquid creates an endless variety of organic patterns. Its particles can also be influenced by a magnet placed outside of its chamber.

Zillatron Kinetic Wind Spinner

Zillatron Kinetic Wind Spinner

This mesmerizing kinetic garden sculpture from Bug Store Designs adds new movement to outdoor spaces. It has 21 spinning points, each of which moves as the wind catches them. It measures 78″h (including its 10″ ground spike) x 47″w and has five stake points to hold it securely in the dirt.

Mechanical Man Kinetic Wall Art

Mechanical Man Kinetic Wall Art

Mechanical engineer Kiyoshi Adachi created this wonderful work of kinetic wall art which features a tiny metal man who turns a crank, setting into motion a ballet of spinning gears and dancing rods. Those elliptical gears are especially cool.

Wall-Mounted Marble Coaster

Wall-Mounted Marble Coaster

JBV Creative designed this interactive marble coaster that can be wall-mounted. To build the maze, he created 3D models in Solidworks, then rendered the components on a 3D printer. Once it’s loaded up with marbles, it continuously recirculates with the turn of its crank. You can buy the STL files to make your own on JBL’s website.

Over-engineered Candy Dispenser

Over-engineered Candy Dispenser

You could just put M&Ms in a candy dish, or you could overengineer a solution like JBV Creative did. The machine is basically a tiny candy factory that dishes out individual candies from a storage tank onto a conveyor belt and then into a tray. Money shot at 7:56. Want your own? Grab the STL files for 3D printing here.

Making a Kinetic Sculpture

Making a Kinetic Sculpture

If you’ve ever walked through an outdoor sculpture garden, you’ve probably seen sculptures that move when the wind blows. Artist Anthony Howe is known for creating kinetic sculptures like these. In this video, he provides a glimpse into the painstaking process that’s involved in making these dynamic and precise works of art.

The Drone that Cannot Fly

The Drone that Cannot Fly

Making drones out of lightweight materials is a must if you want them to fly. But Motores Patelo went the opposite direction, and created a flightless drone out of metal. Sadly, he couldn’t record the whole build due to the lockdown, but the finished piece is still amazing… and could easily take off a finger.

Ocean Wave Kinetic Sculpture

Ocean Wave Kinetic Sculpture

Artist Ross McSweeney created this beautiful work of moving sculpture, which uses a series of cams to create a wave-like action. A tiny boat rocks back and forth as a wooden ocean moves below, and fish dive in and out of the waves. We also love his caterpillar marble machine.

Tiny Automata

Tiny Automata

Back in 2017, artist Federico Tobon of wolfCat Workshop built a series of 29 tiny kinetic sculptures from wood, wire, and paper, each of which was brought to life by simply turning a crank. There are lots of nifty designs, but the walking man and the creature with spinning eyes at the end are our faves.

Wind Wall

Wind Wall

Artist Ned Kahn created this kinetic art installation on the exterior of a parking garage in Clayton, Missouri. Its thousands of tiles each flap in the wind, creating an endless series of patterns which reveal the movement of air currents. The artist’s many works are each inspired by wind, fire, water, sand, or fog.

Incredibly Long Marble Run

Incredibly Long Marble Run

Scott’s Marble Runs shows off a truly impressive build that start outside of his house, then winds its way inside through countless bends and turns. It takes a full 6 minutes for a marble to complete the entire course, which he built using Quercetti Skyrail marble tracks.

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Square Wave Spinner

Square Wave Spinner

Designed by Wales-based sculptor Ivan Black, this hypnotic, kinetic plaything is made from 21 interconnected metal rods, which can be spun and twisted to produce visually-stimulating patterns inspired by the Fibonacci sequence. It’s available in silver, gold, bronze, or a limited edition scarlet color. Be sure to watch the video.

Galloping LEGO Horse

Galloping LEGO Horse

In this soothing LEGO build video, Jason Alleman of JK Brickworks shows off another one of his awesome kinetic sculptures. Like his others creations, it can be driven by crank or a motor. If you want one for your own desktop, he’s posted the build instructions and a link to buy the bricks on his website.

Svalbard Ice

Svalbard Ice

Brooklyn art studio BREAKFAST’s interactive artwork uses arctic temperature data to visualize climate change in real time, displaying above average temperatures in gold, and below average in blue. It also changes appearance when you approach to represent the impact climate change has on all of us.

Makeway Marble Tracks

Makeway Marble Tracks

These fun-looking marble tracks mount on magnetic surfaces like some whiteboard and fridges, letting you create Line Rider-style courses that take full advantage of gravity. Available tricks will include a spinner, bell, launcher, catapult, a motorized lift and more. Launching soon on Kickstarter.

Rolling Ball Sculptures

Rolling Ball Sculptures

Australian artist David Morrell bends metal wire to form roller coaster style tracks, on which marbles spend their days rolling round and round in a perpetual loop. His kinetic sculptures are available in a wide variety of sizes and shapes, and he accepts commission work.

Copernicus Kinetic Sculpture

Copernicus Kinetic Sculpture

A fascinating work of kinetic art by Piotr Jędrzejewski. This endlessly moving creation uses a pair of gear-driven rotating spheres to constantly keep in off balance and in motion. The sculpture is on display in front of Poland’s Wrocław–Copernicus Airport.

Nebula Ellipse Sculpture

Nebula Ellipse Sculpture

Artist Ivan Black shows off an amazing kinetic sculpture which works like a giant-sized, light-up Lollipopter. As it spins, its illuminated aluminum bars create hypnotic, mathematically-inspired patterns. Read more about Ivan’s work on Colossal.

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Design collective onformative shows off a nifty mechanical sculpture they created, which uses a series of spinning black metal tubes which allow light from an array of fluorescent bulbs to pass through. The result is a binary pixel display with an alluring soundtrack. More here.

Mesmerizing Motion Graphics

Mesmerizing Motion Graphics

Motion graphics artist Andreas Wannerstedt creates kinetic sculptures in the digital world. His designs feature satisfying and hypnotic movements which echo real-world physics, but would be challenging to build as physical models. Watch more on his Instagram page.

LEGO Spinning Gimbals

LEGO Spinning Gimbals

Brick builder Sheo shows off a slick LEGO Technic build that uses three independent rings which allow each one to rotate on its own perpendicular axis. We’d love to see it running at a higher speed, but it’s still an amazing contraption. More build details here.

Modular Marble Machine

Modular Marble Machine

Vietnamese shop Wood Marble Machine shows off one of their super cool kinetic toys, a modular machine which sends dozens of marbles rolling around in perpetuity. It looks like you can even order their machines, though we’re not sure if they ship internationally.

Hyundai Kinetic Sculpture

Hyundai Kinetic Sculpture

This has got to be one of the most awesome moving sculptures we’ve seen. It uses thousands of aluminum pistons to replicate a moving car and other images at the Hyundai Motorstudio in Goyang, Korea. The installation was designed by Easywith for Atelier Brückner.

Wind-Powered Kinetic Sculptures

Wind-Powered Kinetic Sculptures

Sculptor Anthony Howe made a series of hypnotizing kinetic sculptures. They’re made so that even a slight breeze would make them move and reveal their true form. They’re like alien beacons of peace. More on YouTube.

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