Leonardo da Vinci's flying machine brought to life at Hull's Ferens Art Gallery
IT'S not every day an artist is asked to create a flying machine designed by Leonardo da Vinci.
But for Michael Scrimshaw, that is exactly what has happened.
The artist, along with partner Helen, has been commissioned to create the 15th-century invention.
The sculpture is being suspended from the ceiling in the foyer at Ferens Art Gallery in anticipation of the Leonardo da Vinci exhibition opening next month.
IS YOUR CAR KEY BENT ? REMOTE FOB NOT WORKING ? LOST CAR KEYS ?...View details
FOR ALL YOUR CAR KEY NEEDS CALL US NOW ON
SNAPPED KEYS, LOST KEYS, KEYS LOCKED IN VEHICLES,
WE ALSO REPAIR 90% OF ALL REMOTES AND KEYS, NO FIX NO CHARGE.
Terms: FREE REMOTE KEY FOB BATTERY ONE PER CUSTOMER
SAVE £3.00 WITH THIS FREE BATTERY
Contact: 01482 423414
Contact: 01482 423414
Valid until: Friday, May 31 2013
The original design was made in the hope of enabling man to fly and inspired by Leonardo's observations of the flight of winged animals such as birds and bats.
Mr Scrimshaw, of the Ropewalk Arts centre in Barton, was enthralled by the challenge.
He said: "We were commissioned to do this in August and I was really excited about it.
"I have always been interested in aviation and I have done a lot of kinetic sculpture.
"To create this from drawings by da Vinci is amazing."
The flying machine is not a completely faithful recreation. It is slightly smaller, with recycled materials being used.
Mr Scrimshaw said: "We always try to use recycled materials where we can.
"The machine is made up of old office table legs, timber frame and fence posts which had been thrown away.
"I like to take things that are broken and useless and make something that works or is of value.
"Not many people are given the chance to do something like this. It is a very proud moment."
The model has been commissioned and produced in collaboration with Heritage Volunteers.
It has taken Michael ten weeks to build and has a wing span measuring more than five metres.
It has been devised to herald the arrival of the major exhibition, 'Ten Drawings by Leonardo da Vinci. A Diamond Jubilee Celebration from the Royal Collection'.
The Ferens Gallery is the only venue in northern England to host the Leonardo display.
Ferens curator Kirsten Simister said: "We wanted people to get really excited about the forthcoming exhibition.
"We felt working with a contemporary artist to recreate one of da Vinci's designs would be a good way of doing that.
"We wanted to capture the diverse range of interests da Vinci had and this flying machine certainly captures the imagination.
"Hopefully, this will also excite children as well."
Leonardo 's interests ranged from art to engineering, botany, anatomy and map-making, which are represented in the ten drawings coming to Hull.
Mrs Simister said: "The sketches are quite small so there will be magnifying glasses available to look at them in finer detail.
"We will also be projecting images of them on a big screen.
"We are the only gallery in the north of England showing this exhibition so it's a big coup for us.
"This is a fantastic opportunity for people to come and view da Vinci's work."
The gallery is working with Heritage Learning colleagues to deliver a series of schools' workshops focused on Leonardo's scientific discoveries as well as his techniques and materials.
Mr Scrimshaw and Ms Scrimshaw will deliver two free family drop-in events during the Leonardo exhibition with Fabulous Flying Machines on Saturday, December 15, and Time Troopers: Crazy Copters on Saturday, January 12.
Simon Green, assistant head of economic development and regeneration, believes the flying machine model will complement the fascinating exhibition.
He said: "Heritage Volunteers supported the idea of engaging a local contemporary artist to help increase visitor awareness and interest ahead of the old master drawings coming in November.
"The model creates a fantastic link to the exhibition and is generating a great sense of excitement and anticipation.
"We expect the Leonardo da Vinci exhibition to be one of our busiest ever."
The latest display, opening on Saturday, November 10, follows the successful David Hockney and Andy Warhol exhibitions.