This Mechanical Wooden Map Puts All Your School Art Projects to Shame

Oh you made a macaroni painting? That's so cute.

By Kirk Miller

 
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10 March 2017

Hot take here, but Leonardo Da Vinci — now there was a man ahead of his time.

So much so that we’re still using his ideas to create some amazing machines. Including a moving wooden map that heavily evokes the Game of Thrones intro.

As part of a yearly project at Philadelphia University, freshmen create machines that utilize the ideas and methods of the legendary Italian polymath.

The students came up with a reimagining of the Thomas Moran painting “Grand Canyon of the Colorado River,” now done as a moving, woodcut topographic map that all butcreams Westeros.

The students used Adobe Illustrator to digitize the topographic map, and built their kinetic machine only using materials available during the Da Vincian era ... which included no metals (although there does seem to be a brass pin or two in the machine).

Overall, it took a small team of students around 200 hours to complete a device “that explores the ideas of movement and the possibilities of what can come from what can not be seen.”

You can find more pics on the building process here.

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