The French artist group La Machine did something very unique to celebrate the 50th anniversary of French-Chinese diplomatic relations. They brought two of their mechanical puppets to Beijing and put on a show. What made it unique was that these weren’t your standard puppets.
La Princesse is a 50-foot tall spider that was showcased in Liverpool, England in 2008 as part of the European Capital of Culture celebration. It was then moved to Yokohama in 2009 as part of the 150th anniversary of their port opening.
In 2014 La Machine created Long Ma, which is a 46-ton, wood and steel, fire-breathing dragon-horse. This 40-foot kinetic structure featured articulated limbs and expressive face, as well as the ability to breathe fire and smoke. Despite it’s size, Long Ma is exceeding agile and has the ability to walk, rear up and make facial expressions, all making it very life-like.
Long-Ma was presented as a gift to China and during the gifting Long Ma battled with La Princesse outside Beijing’s National Stadium. Long Ma was the victor and La Princesse left China to seek battle elsewhere.
Check out the ultimate Battle Royale: