Photos and information courtesy the Visionary Art Museum
One May 1, a Takoma Park team, sporting Alpine headgear, competed in the East Coast Kinetic Sculpture Race, sponsored by the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore. Their entry, entitled Candy Haus garnered the coveted Grand Mediocre Prize–making them the champions of the event.
The eight-hour race covers 15 miles–mostly on pavement, but also including a trip through mud and sand and into the Chesapeake Bay. Candy Haus began the race with tribulation: they broke down yards after the start. They pulled out of the way so others could pass and began sculptural surgery. A few minutes later they were ready for the ascent of Federal Hill. Later, as the Candy Haus entered the water, spectators realized they had no visible means of aqueous propulsion. Then with astonishing precision the four pilots simultaneously reached out and removed the nearest giant lollypop, dipped the business end into the harbor, and began synchronized paddling. A wave of appreciative oohs erupted from the crowd.
“We won because we were truly the most mediocre,” said Captain Jill Feasley.
Kinetic Sculpture Racing traces its roots to Ferndale, California in
1969 when artist Hobart Brown upgraded his son’s tricycle into a
5-wheeled pentacycle that was part of a race down Main Street. Over the
decades since, the California race evolved into a 3-day all-terrain
Kinetic Grand Championship including treacherous sand dunes, water
crossings, and elaborate sculptures and costumes.
Last year, this Team Candy Haus competed with a Snakehead entry. An
article about that adventure can be found on the Voice website: