The internet is full of cats: LOLcats, Nyan cats and, of course, fat cats (hi Maru!). Joining these, in the pantheon of Strange Things Available on the Internet, is the helicopter cat. Who is helicopter cat? Just a dearly departed pet who was turned into a remote controlled helicopter by his artist owner.
Dutch artist Bart Jansen created the cat-mobile (see what we did there?) after his beloved cat, Orville, was run over by a car. For Jansen — an artist whose work, according to his artist’s statement, focuses on the meeting-point between technological progress and human error — the death was an inspiration. Soon after a trip to the taxidermist and a, ahem, layover where Orville was outfitted with plastic propellers on each paw, The Orvillecopter was born. The Orvillecopter lives up to its name and looks exactly like Jansen describes it, “half-cat, half-machine.” Perhaps more importantly, it works.
“When Bart creates installations, they are mostly inventions, new machines, devices that fufill meaningless functions,” the statement reads. “One condition goes: They must work.” Jansen documented his attempts to get the Orvillecopter to fly on YouTube. “He received his wings posthumously,” the artist wrote in a description of the YouTube video showing the Orvillecopter’s test flights. Once it (he?) was fully operational, the helicopter was cleared for landing at the KunstRai ArtFair in Amsterdam that ended Sunday.