Current Exhibition


A Curious Turn : moving, mechanical sculpture

10 March 2018 to 19 May 2018

A Crafts Council Touring Exhibition of extraordinary automata.

Automata are moving mechanical sculptures which are brought magically to life through a sequence of cogs, cams and levers. For centuries they have delighted and bewitched people. Visitors are able to turn, push and crank to see many of the pieces in action!

A Curious Turn presents automata from the leading makers of the last 40 years, ranging from the humorous to the macabre and from the playful to the satirical. Works on show take a look at key automata makers such as Rowland Emett, famous for creating the elaborate inventions of Caractacus Potts in the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968).

Watch an automata in action

More about Curious Turn:

Drop In Family Workshops: drop in anytime between 11am and 3pm.

10 March: Make moving characters out of household objects with artist Izzy Wild

31 March: Izzy Wild returns to create more magical characters. Time to make something extraordinary!

11 April: Colour Mobile workshop with artist Tamsin Pender

All ages/abilities welcome! Free, suggested donation £2/child. Children must be accompanied by a responsible adult.

Family Workshop

21 April: Mechanical Art workshop with 'Fire the Inventor' – Exercise your artistic and engineering skills and learn about the science of mechanical movement in this creative technology workshop. 3 time slots: 11am, 12.15. 1.45 – each session will last for an hour. Price: £5 per participant. Places are limited, booking essential.


Five Artists Reflect on their waning powers, W49, Paul Spooner, 1983 photo Todd-White Art PhotographyKeith Newstead, Trans[port of Delights9. Framed Head, Jan Zalud, 1987, Crafts Council Collection, W79. Stokes Photo Ltd