Almost a decade ago, in 2009, O’Reilly Media and Newcastle ScienceFest collaborated to bring Maker Faire to the UK, and there hasn’t been a dull moment since. Presented by and held at the Life Science Center, Maker Faire UK has hosted a colorful array of project over the years, including a knitting robot, a giant robotic car-crushing hand, a two-ton hexapod, pole-dancing robots made of reclaimed materials, and a robotic horse that breathes fire, to name a few. But lest you think Maker Faire UK is just full of robots, know that there are makers of all stripes represented, from the ones who make Daleks to the aerospace engineer who happens to be a really good baker. Each year the number and variety of makers has grown, as has the community support. The ninth annual Maker Faire UK takes place this weekend, April 28 and 29.
The official video from last year offers a window into the sights, sounds, faces, and projects of Maker Faire UK. Clearly a good time is had by all.
As a retrospective, it’s fun to come across this most excellent Maker Faire UK video from seven years ago, especially the end, where people are asked to describe Maker Faire in one word.
On the Maker Faire UK site, you can peruse the hundreds of maker projects that will be in attendance, as well as check out the schedule of performances and peep the program guide and map. Below are the main headliners. There’s no way you can miss them.
The Herd of Mechanical Creatures by Foolpool
German art collective Foolpool have created a performance somewhere between art installation and mobile theater called Die Herde der Maschinenwesen. Experience this scrapheap safari, with “wild beasts,” mechanical animals made of upcycled bicycles, along with their handlers, roaming around Maker Faire UK.
Waterlight Graffiti by Antonin Fourneau
Waterlight Graffiti is an interactive art piece by Antonin Fourneau where the 6-meter-wide, 1.2-meter-tall “canvas” is made up of thousands of LEDs that are illuminated by applying water! Grab a wet sponge or brush and draw with light. The wetter the LEDs get, the brighter they shine!
The Weird and Wonderful Creations of Colin Furze
YouTube filmmaker, inventor, record breaker, and former plumber Colin Furze creates amazing inventions and world- record-breaking vehicles from the un-safety of his shed. See a range of his weird and wonderful creations at Maker Faire, including the hover bike, ejector bed, record-breaking mobility scooter, flame-throwing guitar, and his X-Men-inspired Wolverine claws and magnetic Magneto shoes.
Mutant Waste Company: Joe Rush’s Clampasaurus and Rustang Sally
Rustang Sally was conceived in a town in California where American Graffiti was filmed and built as a collaboration between Joe Rush and Alex Wright. Created from a stretched V8 Ford Broncho and built up with rusty body panels from Cadillacs, Chevrolets, and Buicks, she was driven across Black Rock desert through Arizona as the embodiment of the American dream.
Clampasaurus is made from 25 BMW subframes, welded together to form the body of an animated, hydraulic, metal-crunching dinosaur. His teeth and head are made from agricultural machinery, and a slashed tractor tire swishes around as his tail.
Steamroadsters by Abacus Theater Company
The Steamroadsters are just what they sound like: steam-powered roadsters. And they look like wasteland versions of penny farthings! Ridden by actors from Abacus Theatre, you’ll most definitely be entertained while you marvel at these whimsical and wonderful creations.
All the information you need to see these jaw-dropping projects, as well as hundreds of others, is on the Maker Faire UK site!