Maker Faire Bay Area 2023

Caterpillar with Chariot

Home: California, United States

The Caterpillar with Chariot is 18 feet long, battery powered, and has a top speed of over two miles per week. The chariot has cams that make the caterpillar walk. But it is the caterpillar that pulls the chariot! I made it by hand and it took the better part of a year. Although, I suppose, it would be equally accurate to say that it’s taken me twenty years to make . . .
Caterpillar with Chariot - Maker Faire Bay Area


Reuben Margolin Maker Faire Yearbook Photo

Reuben Margolin

I'm a local kinetic sculptor inspired by math and nature. I've been making wave and caterpillar sculptures for about 25 years.

What Inspired You to Make This?

In 1994 I saw a little green caterpillar that changed my life. I was camping with friends in the Deep Creek Mountains of Western Utah. It had taken several days of driving on dirt roads to get there. One morning we all went off in different directions and I found myself running and leaping over the smooth stones of a narrow dry streambed. I came to a stop in the middle of a wider sandy place. At my feet was a little green caterpillar no longer than an inch. I got down to look more closely. It was translucent, and I could see right through it. A continuous wave flowed through it as it walked. The movement was part of an abstract sine curve that extended past the boundaries of the caterpillar. If I had been a foot to the left, or a foot to the right, or if the caterpillar had set out on its daily journey a few minutes earlier, or a few minutes later, I would not have seen it. But I did, and it altered the course of my life.

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