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Sky Dancers are hilarious tall hollow figures which constantly move around in semi-realistic ways. We've seen them here and there around Adelaide, our home city in South Australia. These wind-art creations are actually sold as attention-getters for businesses and large events.
Yes, I'm going to call them 'wind art', since the best of these have obviously had some talented design input. Don't be surprised to see one or more of these things at a kite festival near you!
Some of the more expensive products have built-in lighting systems too, so at night the show gets even more spectacular.
How do Sky Dancers work? It's pretty simple. There is a cold air blower sitting on the ground, under each 'leg' of the inflatable. Air pressure keeps the shape inflated most of the time, but also causes constant erratic motion. The fabric is rip-stop nylon, and is attached to the blower using Velcro flaps.
I don't think anything else has been invented that catches the eye of so many so quickly!
Besides the photo up there, here's a video of what we saw when we attended the Adelaide International Kite Festival in March 2011...
The popularity of these randomly-moving tubular figures seems to be on the rise, with many manufacturers jumping on the band-wagon. Other names in use for these or similar products include:
Some of these inflatables are huge, at 18 meters (60 feet) in height. At this size, they are visible to the entire crowd at a large public event. Others are just several meters high, and thus suitable for parking in front of a shop or other business premises. These are the kind we have driven past on many occasions. At this size, they tend to be a little simpler, sporting just a tubular body plus a couple of arms.
Check out this smile-inducing image of a dancing tube man!
Photo courtesy of Mykl Roventine.
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