Wooden Automata Fly and Hen
Featuring a brown hen
Mixed media, made with cherry and lime woods, wire, string and beads
Collect from gallery £130
Including UK delivery £145
H 13 cm
Ian McKay worked in a range of fields including ceramics, metalwork and furniture-making, before making automata, and these various experiences explain his technical skill and obvious pleasure in working with different materials. He is proud to be labelled a toymaker and his approach to his work is refreshingly unpretentious: he says his beautifully constructed, frequently quirky and always eye-catching automata are ‘just something I make’.
“Everyone has toys, everyone plays. My mantra is ‘play every day’. Life is very serious and I think it’s good to have a bit of light relief. Children use play to find out how the world works, while adults use it as more of a distraction. It’s interesting watching how people react to my pieces. Most of them want to have a go and the experience of playing with them is quite liberating, it acts as a kind of escape.”