Rocking Machine sculpture by Herman Makkink

Designer: Herman Makkink

Directors: Tinto Brass, Stanley Kubrick

Rocking Machine is a shiny white phallic sculpture by Herman Makkink which appears in Cat Lady’s house in A Clockwork Orange.

Part of an edition of six made in 1969, it was not designed specifically for A Clockwork OrangeMakkink said “They formed part of my studio work at the time, and, after seeing them there, Kubrick wanted to use them for the film because they probably had the futuristic look he and his wife wanted. In the late sixties and early seventies, we, London based artists, felt terribly hip. We didn’t want to fight the establishment so much as shock them. Pop Art was in full swing and so was the sexual revolution, so I combined a penis with a beautifully shaped female rear in fibre glass. I thought this would be really shocking. I thought I could make the object move by constructing a heavy pendulum swing inside. To my surprise I found that it made an irregular movement, so I exaggerated that by adding extra weights in various places. That resulted in Rocking Machine’s specific, jerky motion.” 

His sculpture Dancing Christs also appeared in A Clockwork Orange – in Alex’s bedroom.

Interestingly the dancing Christs and the ‘Rocking Machine’ by Herman Makkink also featured in the Tinto Brass film Dropout. Brass was also considered at one point for directing A Clockwork Orange. 

Herman’s brother Cornelius Makkink also has paintings and artworks in A Clockwork Orange and DropOut.