Tal Avitzur is a grown man who never lost his childhood passion for robots. He spends most of his time scavenging at scrap metal yards in southern California and what he does with the things he finds is quite remarkable. Tal takes what others consider “discardable junk” and turns it into brilliant art in the form of R O B O T S ! ! !
Tal’s inspiration comes from a youth filled with a healthy dose of science fiction, mythology, comic books, and still having the playful mind of a seven-year-old. This is how he describes his process. “Each piece begins with finding the personality in an object, then test fitting combinations together, and cutting, drilling and grinding until reaching a natural-looking fit. The workshop bench usually has a few different projects going on at any time.”
“Sometimes, sculptures need to be put aside for months while waiting for just the right salvaged part. Making these one-of-a-kind, whimsical, found-object sculptures has allowed me to indulge my passion for creating art, while giving new life to discarded objects, and perhaps preserving a bit of industrial history.”
“I enjoy the excitement people show when they recognize parts that have been repurposed into their new incarnations.”
We were fortunate enough to get a chance to talk to Tal about his creations. Here is what he had to say.
How many robots have you created?
Over 50, including the wall mounts.
Do you have a favorite robot out of all the ones you have created?
They are like children, I cannot play favorites. Actually my favorite always seems to be the one I am currently working on.
About how long does each piece take?
That’s a difficult question to answer. They all take a different amount of time. I’ve been gathering parts to keep on hand over a period of many years.
If I have all the parts for a piece in stock then it takes some time to figure out how to connect components that were not meant to be connected. After that gets sorted out then they can assemble within a few days.
Are these for sale? Will they EVER be for sale?
I started out creating these robots so I could have cool things for the house. The house is now quite full of robots. Luckily I have a very supportive and understanding wife. I realize I need to start sending them out in the world. I’ve had inquiries from many countries. It’s been tough, like a child moving out to go to college. And they look so good as a group, all lit up, that it’s hard to separate them. But they are for sale and the average price is $1,500.
Can fans see these in person anywhere?
Visitors to Santa Barbara, CA are welcome to visit the workshop. Just send an email from the Talbotics website.
Any new projects for 2013?
Finish the 20 or so projects that are sitting on the workbenches awaiting body parts.