Clare Pattinson
Automata & Mechanical Art
Spring | 2015

Clare is based in Margate, Kent and has developed a body of work with a quirky, vibrant seaside and fairground feel to it. She makes automata and mechanical art from salvaged and discarded items collected from her local streets, and found objects washed up from the sea.

Clare's QEST Scholarship has allowed her to develop her work and to study mechanical engineering in more depth, by exploring electrical engineering. With her new knowledge she plans to make her mechanical structures and automata bigger and more complex, incorporating switches and sensors into her designs, which will make them multifaceted and interactive on many levels. Without the funding from QEST, Clare’s progress in designing and making automata would have been hindered by a lack of resources to study and gain further skills.

Since being awarded the scholarship, Clare has been busy working on the 37 commissions she received earlier in the year as a result of a successful Kickstarter crowd funding campaign. She has also made some colourful marionettes and has been having a little fun busking on the streets of Margate joining in with the town’s summer festivities. Future plans include learning more about mechanics and electronics in order to further develop her work. Clare’s dream would be to design and make large outdoor mechanical automata in a public space, ideally for somewhere like the recently reopened and regenerated Dreamland in Margate. She would also like to visit Bimbo Town in Germany where interactive animatronics and mechanical art can be seen at their best.


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01843 447452