Hastings museum celebrates the world of automata

Hastings Museum & Art Gallery has partnered with Cabaret Mechanical Theatre to bring the world of automata to Hastings this summer.

Ingenious fun Hastings Museum & Art Gallery - Brians Brilliant Bike - Keith Newstead
Ingenious fun Hastings Museum & Art Gallery - Brians Brilliant Bike - Keith Newstead

Automata are mechanical sculptures.

Cllr Paul Barnett, lead councillor for regeneration, said: “Ingenious Mechanicals is an exhibition for families and art enthusiast alike. The automata capture moments of humour and offer alluring illusion. They will be exhibited with carefully selected museum items for visitors to marvel at their mechanics.

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“We’re so thrilled to have Hastings Museum & Art Gallery open to the public again, and it’s great to have such an interesting and innovative exhibition to welcome visitors back. The museum team have worked tirelessly to make sure that the museum is as COVID-secure as possible, so visitors can come and feel safe whilst viewing these fascinating mechanical sculptures.

““We would like to say a big thank you in particular to Cabaret Mechanical Theatre, Falmouth Art Gallery and the support of Anthony Horowitz for helping make this exhibition possible.”

Sarah Alexander, owner of Cabaret Mechanical Theatre, “We are delighted to be exhibiting locally once again following on from our exhibition on Hastings Pier in 2018. This exhibition features automata from the Falmouth Art Gallery collection who have kindly loaned some of their wonderful pieces which will be shown alongside Paul Spooner’s magnificent The English Spring and 2 major pieces, including God’s Wonderful Railway by the late Keith Newstead.”

Anthony Horowitz, author of Foyle’s War and automata collector. “Hastings has always been one of my favourite seaside towns. It’s a perfect location for Ingenious Contraptions, a wonderful exhibition of automata from the Falmouth Art Gallery and Hastings Museum.

“For what it’s worth, I have been collecting automata for years and can assure you that some of the greatest names in this peculiar and unique cottage industry – and quite a few of them do indeed live in cottages – will be found together under one roof.

“The exhibition runs for three months and it’s perfectly at home in Hastings. Quirky, imaginative and exhilarating…if you want to celebrate the end of lockdown, I can’t imagine a more entertaining day out.”

Ingenious Contraptions runs from 20 May 2021 until 29 August 2021. The museum is open Thursdays-Sundays and is free to visit. You can book tickets and find out more about the museum at www.hmag.org.uk.