Machine Age

ARTHUR GANSON

A MOVING WORK OF ART: Ganson's Machine with Wishbone

There have been times when kinetic art — think of Marcel Duchamp's spinning bicycle wheel screwed to a stool, Alexander Calder's abstract mobiles or the self-destructing machines of Jean Tinguely — moved the art world. Recently, though, it has tended to be sidelined as the work of toymakers and garden-shed boffins, finding a warmer welcome in the science museum than the art gallery. That's no bad thing, to judge from "Fantastical Mechanisms — Machines Tell Stories," the biggest exhibition of its kind in Europe since the '60s, on show at the dashingly futuristic Phaeno science center in Wolfsburg, Germany until June...

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