san-francisco

San Francisco

San Francisco

The Vorpal Galleries provided an interesting selection of entertaining mobile assemblages and ingenious junk-sculptural machines by Robert Gilbert. Mr. Gilbert’s largest and most elaborate pieces are in a comical vein, in which his basic procedure is to construct a large supportive frame or armature from such choice junkyard finds as oddly shaped sections of antique cast iron grillwork. From these he suspends elaborate Rube Goldberg networks of moving parts, in which ludicrously extensive relays of cogwheels, rotor-belts, elbow pivots and the like terminate in some such trivial function as the tripping of a crude spring-hammer device to produce a dull “plink” on an old bell.

Gilbert often combines a number of such complexes of comic mechanical events as branch relays within a single “antic Mechanism,” usually activated by a simple electrically powered rotor, operated by the spectator from

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