Image: Rocking Toy, Bear and Man(detail), Village of Bogorodskoye, Russia, Wood. Collection Mingei International Museum. Gift of Joan and Robert Crutchfield. Photo by Lynton Gardiner. 1999-39-202. 8.12

On View

Dec 20, 2007 - Sep 17, 2008

Curated By

Rob Sidner and Jerry Maloney

ART OF PLAY — Kinetic Toys of the World, which opened at Mingei International Museum in Escondido drew on the Museum’s permanent collection of kites and toys from around the world and featured objects that move when manipulated. There were kites, pull- and push-toys, antique mechanical banks, puppets and a group of hand-held wood toys from Central and Eastern Europe including pecking chickens, dancing bears and other gamboling animals.

Kites from India, Japan, Thailand, Korea, China, France and Taiwan in shapes as diverse as dragons, butterflies, centipedes and cicadas floated above the Main Gallery, as did a Chinese Festival Parade Lion. Also on view were trains, cars, bicycles and airplanes.

ART OF PLAY was sponsored by Supervisor Pam Slater-Price and the San Diego County Board of Supervisors.

Playing throughout the run of the exhibition were three films by Ray and Charles Eames: “Parade,” “Toccata for Toy Trains” and “Tops,” along with “Calder’s Circus” and “Antique Toy Banks,” a Mingei International Museum production.

Exhibition enhancement events included family workshops sponsored by The San Diego Union-Tribune: Mini-Kite Making with the San Diego Kite Club on Saturday, February 9, 2008, a puppet show given by the San Diego Guild of Puppetry on Saturday, March 8, 2008 and a workshop, Making Wooden Toys that Move, with the San Diego Fine Woodworkers Association on Saturday, April 12, 2008. The Noble Deer, a shadow puppet play was presented by the San Diego Guild of Puppetry on Saturday, June 14, 2008. Another Mini-Kite Making program with the San Diego Kite Club took place on July 2, 2008.