| Art in the Frame > Artists > Robert Race
I try to make things which move in simple but
interesting ways, hoping that they will appeal to both children
and adults. Moving toys have always been made all over the world
from wood, bamboo, clay, paper, string, wire, leaves, feathers and
These traditional toys have been a strong influence on my work,
and I have travelled in Indonesia, Mexico, India and Japan in search
of them. There are many pressures leading to their disappearance
today, but they are still to be found in many parts of the world,
sold on the street or appearing for fairs and festivals.
At their best they achieve a vigorous imagery and make ingenious
use of really simple mechanisms. The makers of these toys have also
been constantly inventive in their use of materials: They have cleverly
exploited the properties of whatever natural, re-used and recycled
materials were readily available to them.
I try to do the same and at present particularly like using driftwood.
I like to say that this is because collecting it gives me a good excuse
for going to the seaside. This is true: Like so many others I love
beaches and shorelines, and I live too far from the sea. But there
is perhaps more that can be said:-