I like Mondays. On Monday, I am refreshed from the weekend and exhilarated by the possibilities of the week ahead. I also like magic. I like its history, its intersection with technology, and its crafty use of human nature. I figured I’d combine the two and make a Monday feature that is truly me: a little bit of magic and a look at the week ahead.
In one form or another, automata have been around since ancient times, doing work and as spectacles of engineering. It was Jean Eugène Robert-Houdin’s use of them in his stage shows that solidified their connection to illusionists in the history of magic. Today, audiences are aware that there is very little “magical” about a machine, but this doesn’t mean that they aren’t beautiful and a little wonderful in design. In the age of electronically programmable robots, the purely mechanical automaton is work of art. And in the case of Thomas Kuntz, dark works of art.
I especially like the combination of illusions within several of Kuntz’s works.
There are a bunch more videos on the haxanthrobo YouTube channel including more behind the scenes looks.
What Am I Reading?
What Am I Writing?
I had a good week of writing last week. I passed the 23K mark on In Need of Luck, adding over 4000 words. This week, the word count probably won’t be as good. I need to do a little bit of an organizational session and nail down some details, maybe even some rewriting.