Have you ever seen art like this before? Meet Theo Jansen.

You MUST watch this video.  It's very short, and it will add a lot of wonderment to your day.  I'm enthralled.

 Theo Jansen explores the boundaries between art and engineering, creating these "kinetic sculptures." 

These "animals" move.  Or I should say, they walk.  They're wind-powered.  It's amazing.  They look like a cross between an exoskeleton and an erector set, which is basically what they are, and then they start moving and they become so anthropomorphic, you wonder if they're alive in some way.

Many of his creatures are so "evolved" that they are now capable of "living" on the beaches on their won-- the wind powers their "walking," and they have sensors that tell them to stop and turn around when they hit either water or dry sand, keeping them permanently on the wet sand.

They even have sensors that tell them when a storm is coming, and their "brain" tells them to start pounding a stake into the ground so they don't fall over in the storm.

Can you imagine having a brain that dreamed up stuff like this?

In the video above, you see the "rhinoceros"-like sculpture walking.

If you want to learn even more about Jansen and his work, click here for a ten minute video presentation by Jansen that shows more animals walking and an explanation of how they work.

It's also extremely interesting to hear how he talks about the animals-- he doesn't discuss them as art, or really as machines or product prototypes either-- he talks about them as though they are animals that he is looking after, and he doesn't seem to feel any need to explain the "purpose" of them, which I think is an amazing insight into the brain of someone this creative. 

I think that science and art are going to continue to merge in this way, in the minds of people like Jansen who are capable of seeing their relation to each other, and have a desire to explore their intersection without the desire to make a practical product or advancement in technology.  While in art, it seems sometimes that "we've seen it all," and there's nothing new under the sun, science is continually evolving and pushing boundaries in material ways, and through the integration of science and art, art could do the same.

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