Exmouth beach to be visted by mechanical monsters

MECHANICAL monsters made from recycled scrap are coming to Exmouth beach as part of Exeter's summer festival.

MECHANICAL monsters made from recycled scrap are coming to Exmouth beach as part of Exeter's summer festival.

The strandbeests - beach animals - have been created by Dutch artist and engineer Theo Jansen, who has spent 20 years developing a series of mechanical, walking, wind-powered kinetic, skeletal creatures.

Jansen will be giving live demonstrations of his creations for three days on Exmouth beach, followed by a display in Exeter's Princesshay Square, to coincide with the city's summer festival.

The giant creations are engineered from recycled scrap, plastic electrical tubing and two-litre water bottles.


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The designs store energy generated by wind driven sails, using the recycled drinks bottles as 'stomachs', and avoiding the need for metallic or electronic parts.

The artist's newest creation, which will be on show, stands ten metres long and four-and-a-half metres high, and is a Siamese twin structure where the two monsters balance on each other to avoid being blown over.

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* The live demonstrations take place June 25-27 on Exmouth beach, and July 2-4 in Princesshay Square. Both run from 11am-5pm, admission free.

Theo Jansen will give an illustrated talk in the Exeter Central Library music room, on July 3, at 7pm. Admission free, early booking advised. Call (01392) 213786.

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