The Machines de l’Ile is an amazing French artistic project. It is a blend of the invented worlds of Jules Verne, the mechanical universe of Leonardo da Vinci, and the industrial history of Nantes, on the exceptional site of the former shipyards. www.lesmachines-n...
Samurai archer. The art of archery was perfected in Japan. Something they valued so much that even though they had gunpowder and even guns...they banned them. They shut off all contact with the outside world and did not advance their firepower for centuries. So they were at a loss in 1853 with the arrival of the American Black Ships of Commodore Matthew Perry. The American ships opened Japan up for trade, literally at gunpoint.
The Great Elephant is 12 meters high, weighs 45 tons, and can carry 49 people on its back. But the not-in-Kansas-anymore part is that it trumpets, wags its tail, blinks its eyes, sprays people with water from its trunk, and has been known to pee on the sidewalk. The beast is but one of the Machines of the Isle of Nantes, a sculptural and mechanical oasis of whimsical creatures.
We travel together, passengers on a little spaceship, dependent on its vulnerable reserves of air and soil; all committed for our safety to its security and peace; preserved from annihilation only by the care, the work, and, I will say, the love we give our fragile craft. ~Adlai Stevenson