Panamarenko (Antwerp, 1940) is an exceptional and unclassifiable figure in contemporary art, who has been described as 'one of the great creators of the end of the century'. Artist, Engineer, Poet, Physicist, Inventor and Visionary, and has for thirty years pursued a singular course of exploration of space, movement, flight, energy and the force of gravity. His work, fusing artistic and technological experiment, takes many forms: Aeroplanes, flying carpets, cars, flying saucers, submarines and birds. Spectacular structures of strange beauty, both playful and inspiring.
This post from Ine Dehandschutter via http://www.behive.be/art/artists/
Frustrated Belgian aircraft designer and artist quits the art field to take up coffee making: 'Panamajumbo'.
"Panamarenko's experimental flying machines modeled on the motion of birds, insects, and human craft have been greeted with wonder and acclaim since the 1960s. In his exploration of the potentially fertile relationships linking technology and nature, Panamarenko considers issues of imagination as well as function.
Since the mid-1960s, he has invented flying machines that combine primitive forms with technologically sophisticated materials in his search to resolve practical mechanical problems as well as to probe metaphysical dilemmas. In addition to building and testing speculative models, Panamarenko has developed singular theories on the nature of closed systems, electromagnetism, and the relationship between inertia and mass."
The name Panamarenko is supposedly an acronym for Pan American Airlines and Company. In 2005 he retired from art to promote his own coffee-brand, PanamaJumbo.
This post from http://meinekleinefabrik.blogspot.com/2007/02/frustrated-belgian-aircraft-designer.html