Cathedral Coaster Fabrication Update

The ball machine crew has been busy putting together our newest kinetic rolling ball sculpture, Cathedral Coaster, for American Memorial Hospital in Reims, France. The kinetic sculpture will feature a variety of devices, including hammer-bells, loop-de-loops, ball lifters, swinging-birds and spiral helixes. Here are some photos from the ball machine fabrication shop of this whimsical sculpture coming together! Check out the last blog post about this project HERE.

Cathedral Coaster Ball Machine Fabrication Begins

Our Cathedral Coaster Ball Machine is in production! This new rolling ball sculpture was commissioned by American Memorial Hospital, a hospital located in Reims, France that specializes in pediatric medicine. This kinetic machine celebrates the rich history of the region with a depiction of Reims Cathedral integrated into the structure among many other whimsical elements. Here are some photos of the first stages of this kinetic ball machine coming together.

Incrediball Journey through Stanford Campus Fabrication Progress

We’ve been working for a few months now on a new ball machine called Incrediball Journey through Stanford Campus. This new ball machine features many new devices as well as site specific miniatures that reference real buildings and landmarks that can be found throughout Stanford. The balls travel through the machine as students travel across the campus; as visitors watch, the ball travels past Hoover Tower, the Bing Concert Hall, the Stanford Stadium and more. We hope this new machine will excite viewers of all ages and provide them with […]

Growing Home in progress!

We have started fabrication on our new project Growing Home ! Growing Home is a sculpture group is reminiscent of a scene that people find at the beach. A monumental shell sculpture at the center surrounded by enlarged beach pebbles works together to form a welcoming place for visitors to meet or sit in small groups. The shell sculpture is perforated with text that tells the history of San Diego. The text is arranged in bands that spiral down the shell in the same was that a shell grows from […]

Camaraderie Testing!

After Camaraderie finished metal fabrication, the sculptures were moved over to our shop to begin testing! Our electronics team has been continuously testing the lights while the our fabrication team prepares the sculptures for shipment. Camaraderie will be installed at a veteran’s clinic in Palo Alto, CA in early 2018. The piece was inspired by the strong sense of camaraderie found among the members of the armed forces. The sculpture integrates words collected from veterans to tell their exceptional story of friendship and solidarity.

Incrediball Journey through Stanford Campus

Incrediball Journey through Stanford Campus is a new Ball Machine Sculpture being built for the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. The balls travel through this custom machine and give viewers the opportunity to experience Stanford Campus in an entirely new way. As visitors watch, the ball travels along the track, passing many of the artistic, academic, historical and memorable places on the campus, reimagined as small ball machine devices and models. Incrediball Journey through Stanford Campus will install later this year!

Earth’s Blanket Fabrication

Earth’s Blanket continues fabrication! Similar to the construction of Latent Energy, Earth’s Blanket is composed of a powder coated stainless steel and aluminum support structure, illuminated acrylic hemispheres and custom electronics. This small series includes six interactive sculptures that represent important small molecules: water, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, ozone and freon-12.The molecules are arranged around the Colorado State University Chemistry Building and Science Quad in an array that invites exploration and socialization.

Sprouts Fabrication

We are in the process of creating a series of sculptures for the Phoenix Children’s Hospital in Phoenix, AZ. Sprouts is a series of perforated, curvilinear sculptures that reference the form of a plant shoot or sprout, but at a monumental scale. The field of sculptures creates an abstract yet referential environment that invites people to interact with the piece by moving in and around it. The subtle perforation is made up of different sized circles, rotated and skewed slightly to provide the illusion of small water droplets hitting the […]

Din Don Restoration Update

Our ball machine team has been busy meticulously cleaning, repairing and reconstructing Din Don, a monumental ball machine sculpture from Kobe, Japan made by famed kinetic artist George Rhodes in 1992. Once the restoration is complete, the sculpture will again be disassembled, crated, and then make its way back to Kobe Harborland with Creative Machine’s ball machine team. From there, they will piece the sculpture back together and get it ready to bring joy and wonder back into the lives of those who visit Kobe Harborland for years to come! […]

Din Don Restoration!

In addition to building new and exciting ball machines, Creative Machines also restores older kinetic sculptures that are in need of maintenance, repairs, and cleaning. The Din Don Ball Machine from Kobe, Japan was originally built in 1992, and after many years of providing entertainment and joy to thousands of people it was time for a little much needed TLC! Watch the beginning of the restoration process unravel below, and be sure to look out for our next post which will document more behind the scenes details as the ball […]

Wings Over Water Fabrication Update

Creative Machines was selected to design and fabricate a monumental kinetic sculpture that will be integrated into the Fountain of Americas outside of the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston, TX. This piece, Wings Over Water, was commissioned by Houston First Corporation in collaboration with Houston Arts Alliance. The sculpture was inspired by the theme of migration, which is one of the governing metaphors behind the architectural re-design of the convention center. The connection between avian and human migration reflects Houston’s diverse population but also the idea that people […]

3D Printing Large Acrylic Objects

Creative Machines has been developing one of the world’s largest 3D printers, and certainly the only one specifically designed to print in clear or translucent acrylic. This stems from our desire to break free from the sheets and sticks that most engineered materials are supplied in. We want to build in the way that nature builds, more like a spider, and that’s why we call our 3D printer “The Spider.” Stay tuned. We expect to achieve good results within a 60′ x 60′ x 24′ envelope by May 1, 2014 […]

Fabricating ‘Chinook Arc’

These photos span the six month period when we fabricated ‘Chinook Arc’ by Joe O’Connell and Blessing Hancock. This is the largest sculpture we have ever built, and one of the most highly engineered. We did everything in house with the exception of manufacturing the space frame members. We built our own heat-forming oven to form the panels, our own 3D jigs to route them to shape, and welded all the supporting brackets and legs.

Potters for Peace Update: Chiapas Mexico Project

Creative Machines worked with non-profit organization, Potters for Peace, to design a new portable water filter press. Potters for Peace sets up small factories to produce point-of-use water filters where they are needed most. These water filters solve the huge problem of getting potable water in places with very little infrastructure. Potters for Peace brings the molds, a 20-ton press, and their training to remote areas; local potters do the rest and create their own self-sustaining businesses. It is a much better model for international development than building centralized plants […]

Installing ‘Heart Beacon’ & ‘Heroic City’

We recently installed Heart Beacon and Heroic City by artists Joe O’Connell and Blessing Hancock. Both pieces are located at the Emergency Coordination Center in Portland, Oregon. Heart Beacon is an interactive enclosure of light, color and sound that senses and artistically displays the heartbeats of visitors who lay their hands on the piece. This highly interactive sculpture takes the literal and metaphoric pulse of the Portland community. Heroic City is an interior wall piece for the building’s lobby. Conceptually, the form is an abstracted map, and it displays a variety of […]

Piole Site Visit

Joe O’Connell recently visited Himeji, Japan and toured the rooftop of the Piole building. Creative Machines will be creating a new interactive sculpture for the rooftop scheduled to installed next year. The artwork was inspired by the nearby Himeji Castle, the Kuwagata beetle, and the popular hand signal for the peace sign.