The Machines of Nantes and other steampunk creatures

Les Machines de l'île
The imaginative world of Jules Verne mixed with the mechanical universe of Leonardo da Vinci, as themselves claim. We could add some more sources of inspiration for the exceptional work of François Delarozière and Pierre Orefice. The first one is the soul and head of La Machine, a unique French company that made possible the following circus of mechanical creatures where we are about to enter.

The Machines of the Isle is an original theme park based in Nantes, in the banks of the Loire river in France. The area around the former docks of this city was redeveloped to host this project, including elements that seem out of an alternative future, Steampunk-style.

Le Grand Éléphant, a massive articulated robot is the star of the exhibition. It has even become the official symbol of the city of Nantes.

Mechanical animals
Nautilus' worst nightmare. A giant squid immersing visitors into Captain's Nemo depths.
Image by Guillaume Singer and Mr Thinktank

Machines of the Isle
Abyssal fish. Since 2007 the island of Nantes has been repopulated with these strange artifacts.
Image by Guillaume Singer

Park Machines France
Manta Ray. The public can ride and move these devices as some kind of a puppeteer.
Image by Guillaume Singer

Park Steampunk France
Dr. Zoidberg's ancestor. These animals are now part of the recently open Marine Worlds Carousel, an extraordinary merry-go-round 82 feet tall (25 meters) and seats for 85 people. Image by Charles Parent

The Machines of Nantes
Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind. In the warehouses are the workshops where to see the work in progress.
Image by Jmix photo

Nantes Elephant
Currently these galleries are displaying this new generation of terrestrial beasts.
Image by Jmix photo

The Heron Tree
The steel tree. This is the mock-up of a monumental structure that will include hanging gardens and branches where people could walk over. It would reach 35 meters and be topped by two herons. Image by Jmix photo

Machines de l'île Nantes
Terminator-turtle. Not only 19th century-style paraphernalia.
Image by Jmix photo

The Little Shop of Horrors
The Little Shop of Horrors + SAW. A carnivorous metallic plant?
Image by Fourrure

Giant Mechanical Spider
This giant mechanical spider is another remarkable creation from the same team, a spectacle for the masses that was performing in several cities across the world. Image by Hector Garcia

La Princesse
The Liverpool Princess was first seen in 2008, as a highlight of the city's Capital of Culture. At first it was hanging on the vertical side of a building that had to be demolished. Image by Ajari

Spider Liverpool
Helping to create jobs. The arachnoid is operated by several people, at least a controller per leg.
Image by Toshihiro Oimatsu

Yokohama Spider
Arachnophobia in Yokohama. The artifact fits perfectly with the fascination that Japanese seem to have for robots. It travelled here in 2009. Image by Toshihiro Oimatsu

Nantes Machines
Who knows what new creations are waiting inside the mind of these guys?
Image by Stéfan

Elevator furniture
Bonus track: The last move. Nantes has a lively scene of spectacular performances and street sculptures.
Image by Mr Thinktank

Serpent d'Ocean
Oceanic Dragon. It's surprising the quantity and quality of artistic works that you may stumble upon the city and outskirts. Image by Philippe Cabaret

Dragon Nantes
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  1. wonderful pictures - especially from the museum. Do you have more pictures from Nantes?

  2. The best available are already here!


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