Mechanism # 3. (Click on any image to read about it)
Metal and Wood, 17x13, 22 pounds.
Made from junk in my basement, everything on this sculpture has personal meaning to me. There are things from my Grandpa's (Toivo Koykka) farm in Elo Michigan , things from my Dad (Arnold Maki Sr.), and things from my career at the Postal Service. I was an MPE-9 - Mail Processing Equipment Tech - on their multimillion dollar machinery. Cancelling, sorting, and conveyor systems, etc. I love the little sign I made for it when I put it in the SOAA Art At The Museum Show. It also has two lights that work on it and a little buzzer! (Partially restored, not fully deactivated!).
It's amazing how much the world has changed in the last 20 to 30 years. The world used to run on vacuum tubes, gears, simple switching mechanisms, analog gauges, and copper and brass wires and gizmos.
Adjustable AC Voltage Machine
Even though this is a usable and practical object I consider it art because I made it completely from junk in my basement . And, as in all these sculptures, they are made to be aesthetically pleasing, well balanced in composition and harmony, and color, just like any painting. The heart of it is a Variac Voltage mechanism to adjust AC voltage from 0 volts to 150 volts.
The case is made mostly from wood and the sheet metal from old computers. The Variac itself came from a U.S. Postal service LSM (Letter Sorting Machine ). I worked for almost 38 years at the Postal Service, the last half as a MPE-9. Mail Processing Equipment Tech. Many years ago our crew dismantled and junked 6 outdated LSM machines. Most of us kept a few momentos of the machines. Each machine was as big as a small house, so it was quite a job dismantling them.
The Fan From Junk
Another mechanism made completely from junk.
Parts of a postal LSM (letter sorting machine) machine, the fan was one of many that cooled the inside of the machine , the brass plate is from the supervisors control panel, and the start-stop mech is from an individual operators console (there were 12 on each machine). It took 18 people to run one of these monster machines. The other badges and tags are my personal name plates, and parts room equipment tag, etc.
The fan works great, I keep it in my library and use it on my desk daily in the summer.
The other pics of it here are from various other angles.
* Gold Ring
This is a white gold ring I made around the year 1990. I made the wax models for it, got the white gold rings we had hanging around the house, and had the Miner's Den Jewelry Co. in Royal Oak cast this ring from my wax model and my gold. I had to do all the finishing work on it. A cast ring right out of the foundry is really rough, it needed to be filed, sanded, polished, and then I had to apply the black material in the vacant spaces and polish that. It was quite a project. I had to do it a couple times because at first it was too heavy and too big. It was an amazing learning process. The white gold came from my original wedding band (which was too small as I got older), my wife's original wedding set (she got an upgrade) , and from the first pearl ring I gave her way back when. So this ring has a lot of family history in it.
The design is my artist signature on top (see the menu item, My Artist Signature, for details), an art deco version of my name MAKI on one side, and my favorite motto and words of wisdom from the Chandogya Upanishad on the other side.