San Francisco as Howl's Moving Castle. With balls.

One man, 100,000 toothpicks, and 35 years: An incredible kinetic sculpture of San Francisco

Thirty five years ago artist Scott Weaver had already begun work on this insanely complex kinetic sculpture, Rolling through the Bay, that he continues to modify and expand even today. The elaborate sculpture is comprised of multiple "tours" that move pingpong balls through neighborhoods, historical locations, and iconic symbols of San Francisco, all recreated with a little glue, some toothpicks, and an incredible amount of ingenuity.

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4 Responses:

  1. bubba flirf says:

    the oddest part is how, normally, you might expect someone who spent thirtyfive years gluing little toothpicks together into an eccentric model of their hometown to be at least partly a screaming mad loon. but this guy seems pretty normal.

    • James says:

      If you figure only evenings and weekends, it doesn't work out to more than a toothpick per hour, so clearly he kept himself sane with a suitable level of slack. The people who can really end up on edge are the more driven types and crisis (homeless, battered, EMT, hotlines, etc.) and animal shelter volunteers. I watched an animal lover who blamed themself for not doing enough to help place strays completely lose it to the extent that they weirded out and lost the respect and support of their loved ones and community.

      • Pavel Lishin says:

        Do they now live in a house with twenty dogs and thirty seven cats?

        • James says:

          Just the opposite, sadly. They had to move from a nice house with a big fenced yard into a shared apartment. And then they started breeding gnats in balled up wet paper towels placed all around the house. So the roommates split and if it hadn't been for an unexpected windfall, it would have ended terribly.