Kinetic toothpick sculpture of San Francisco

Scott Weaver is a San Francisco sculptor who spend 35 years building the most stupendously gorgeously wonderful toothpick sculpture, a kinetic piece that is a miniature of San Francisco and all that's glorious about the city. The piece has 100,000 toothpicks, and 10,000,000 measures of awesome:

Thirty five years ago I had yet to be born, but artist Scott Weaver had already begun work on this insanely complex kinetic sculpture, Rolling through the Bay, that he continues to modify and expand even today. The elaborate sculpture is comprised of multiple “tours” that move pingpong balls through neighborhoods, historical locations, and iconic symbols of San Francisco, all recreated with a little glue, some toothpicks, and an incredible amount of ingenuity. He admits in the video that there are several toothpick sculptures even larger than his, but none has the unique kinetic components he’s constructed. Via his website Weaver estimates he’s spent over 3,000 hours on the project, and the toothpicks have been sourced from around the world.

You can see Weaver's piece at the American Visionary Art Museum.

One man, 100,000 toothpicks, and 35 years: An incredible kinetic sculpture of San Francisco [Christopher/This is Colossal]

(via Making Light)


  1. I’m not complaining, but as an interesting historical note, I first saw this on Boing Boing nearly three years ago:

  2. I’ve seen this in person, it is truly amazing. The fact that is made of tooth picks adds to the complexity and enjoyment of the piece. When I was there they had a faithful reconstruction of the Titanic(? not 100% on this) made of toothpicks, it was boring and lifeless compared to this.

    The American Visionary Art Museum has some very interesting pieces. I recall some pieces by one artist that were in a style similar to the book “Where the wild things are” and content similar to the NSFW temples in India but on an acid trip.

  3. I’ve very happy this is being boingboing-ed again, since I am the person who shot the video… :D
    However, I should mention that Rolling Through the Bay is no longer at the American Visionary Art Museum: Scott has brought it back home, and it will next be on display in San Francisco, at the Exploratorium’s new home at Pier 15. The sculpture will have a permanent home in the new Tinkering Studio, and Scott is planning on coming by as often as he can to give people his very entertaining “guided tours” of San Francisco. The Exploratorium opens April 17, 2013.

  4. how did you find this? i was just reading some depressive tweets that david oreilly tweeted (and deleted) and while looking for something to cheer him up, i googled “works of art that took a long time to create” and found a top 10 list of art that took more than 1000 hours to create. this was number 1. decided not to post it, go to boing boing and BAM it’s here. what the hell!

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