Wednesday 12 July 2017 to Sunday 29 October 2017
National Science Museum, Daejeon

The National Science Museum holds Moving Toys from Scotland, a unique exhibition consisting of dolls and sculptures (automata) driven by various mechanical devices, to provide an opportunity to feel the original creativity and scientific thinking of the artist hidden in it. 

Cabaret Mechanical Theatre is widely regarded as having revolutionised the art of automata in the UK and across the world. This collective of talented artists including Paul Spooner, called the founder of contemporary automata art, pushed the boundaries of mechanical art, coming up with ever more ingenious, humorous and bizarre automata.  

Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre, centering around the main artist Eduard Bersudsky, has created a weird and wonderful world from a magical mix of scrap, hand-carved wooden figures, atmospheric lighting and haunting melodies.  

The highly skilled and well-known Korean artist Chon Seung-il also shows 11 stunning automata. His immaculate and beautiful automata designs are routed in traditional Korean culture and have been celebrated in several solo and group exhibitions. 

Moving Toys from Scotland

  • Date: 12 July – 29 October 2017
  • Time: 09.30–18.00 (Closed on Mondays)
  • Ticket: Student – 8,000 KRW (Individual) / 6,000 KRW (Group)
    Adult – 10,000 KRW (Individual) / 8,000 KRW (Group)
    For groups of 20 or more, Children, Disabled and National Merit –  6,000 KRW (Individual) /4,000 KRW (Group)

Cabaret Mechanical Theatre

Cabaret Mechanical Theatre (CMT) was started by Sue Jackson in 1979 as a general craft shop in Falmouth, Cornwall. From these humble beginnings, Jackson turned CMT into a mechanical theatre packed full of weird and wonderful machines that revolutionised British automata and reached global acclaim. 

Together Jackson, Markey, Spooner and Fuller reinvented the art of automata, drawing on the British traditions of satire, whimsy and comedy to offer a contemporary alternative to the traditional Japanese Karakuri ningyo and eighteenth-century French automata. In doing so they re-awakened people’s interest in mechanical art and inspired a new generation of automatists. CMT was soon so popular that larger premises were required to accommodate the rapidly expanding number of machines and visitors, so in 1984 Jackson moved the part shop, part gallery to Covent Garden, London. Here it became a unique centre for mechanical art and established an international reputation, opening up Jackson’s automatists to a global audience.

Jackson also turned the shop gallery into a hugely successful worldwide touring show, producing travelling automata exhibitions and running workshops.

Nowadays, CMT has continued to develop stunning permanent and temporary automata exhibitions for venues across the world that feature the spectacular works of the many exceptional CMT automatists. 

Eduard Bersudsky and Sharmanka Kinetic Theater

Originally formed in St Petersburg, Russia and now based in Glasgow, Scotland, Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre exists to promote and celebrate the unique art of Eduard Bersudsky – sculptor, wood carver, mechanic and artist.

Eduard’s art evolved in St Petersburg (then called Leningrad) during the Soviet era. He started carving wooden sculptures in his late 20s, at a time when his home was a small room in a communal flat and he earned his living doing menial jobs. 

There are now three sets of machines-Gothic Kinetic, Singer Circus and Merry-Go-World-which tour within the UK and internationally. There are also works held in permanent collections in many countries including Denmark, Spain, Israel, Poland, Russia and Scotland.

A totally original artist, Eduard’s work combines carved figures of animals and humans, found objects, bits of junk and old machinery and-most of all-boundless imagination. Working with Tatyana and Sergey, it comes to life in an extraordinary theatre of movement, music, lights and shadows. Comic, sad, poetic and ironic, Eduard’s art reflects on human nature in all its bizarre variations. It is as ancient as the hills yet utterly contemporary.

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Visual Arts, Theatre and Dance
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UK/Korea 2017-18