Sunday, September 2, 2012

Don't loose the key !

"Le Voyage dans la Lune" - Georges Miéliès
France, 1902
I just saw the movie "HUGO" by Scorcese about the life of Miéliès, the creator of the first "Science Fiction" movie ever, and the whole story involving keys.

Toy (windup) keys
Yes, toy-collectors love keys. And automata... Most of the wind-up robots and animals in my collection have mechanisms that are very similar to the ones found in watches and clocks. Precision manufactured and perfectly oiled gears that bring these toys to life...

Even the "electric" robots (read "Battery Powered") have remanescents of that era - with plastic sprockets replacing brass gears - and litho panels that could inspire Tim Burton.

Litho chest panel (detail), Lantern Robot (HAHA reproduction)
China, 2010's
Finding old toys is difficult... Finding them in working order with the original key a challenge... But then, challenges is what a hobby is all about...

Giraffe, Max Carl Original, W-Germany,
One of my son's favorite toys when he was
younger... loved that spinning tail !

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