creativiTEA: loving amy flynn’s fabulous fobots!

Raleigh, NC artist Amy Flynn is passionate about shopping and making things.

Fantastic, funky, fine, futuristic, flamboyant, fetching, fierce, fanciful, quirky and wonky.

Amy Flynn’s amazing FOBOTS (Found Object Robots) are just plain fun! She scours the world for cool junk to create her one-of-a-kind sculptures, fascinating characters who go by such whimsical, punny names as “Biscotty,” “Boobarella,” “Dan Sedan,” “Robot Robama,” and “Scubi Dude.”

A freelance illustrator for 25+ years (greeting cards, children’s books, giftware), Amy shifted her focus to fobots when the economy tanked in 2008. She admits to always having a weird fixation for robots and loving flea markets, so why not exercise her creative muscle by doing something that truly makes her happy?

“Family Out for a Stroll”

She lives in a 1920’s house and her first fobot was made from an original doorknob as well as other junk she found in her basement. Now, in addition to flea markets and scrapyards, Amy finds spare parts via internet auctions. She solders and bolts the pieces together and includes a numbered copper plate on the back of each sculpture. If the fobot opens, there’s a metal heart inside, just like the tin man.

I especially love the fobots made from kitchen objects — spice containers, bundt pans, tea balls, whisks, jello molds, tart tins, cake decorating tips, pastry blenders — but I’m equally impressed by how she incorporates such odds and ends as pool balls, camera parts, hair dryers, clock faces, sewing machine attachments, locks, hose fittings, opera glasses, drawer pulls, gauges, and jewelry. Somehow, she makes it all work with an irresistibly charming end product that brims with personality and narrative potential.




“Birds and the Bees”

Truly an innovative artist with an environmental conscience, Amy loves each step of the process — the thrill of the chase, assembly of spare parts, soldering and bolting, naming her fobots, and then finally seeing them find just the right homes via art shows and festivals around the country.

It was hard deciding which ones to share here since I love so many of them. Much of the fun is examining each carefully to try to recognize all the parts. Enjoy!




“Robert Frost Free”
“Chip and Block”
These fobots on exhibit at the Arizona Museum for Youth through May 24, 2014.
“Radiant Orchid”
“Mario Botali”
“Ludwig von Bothoven”



“Spring Chicken”
“Party Animals”
“Kitty Kitty Bang Bang”


* Visit Amy’s Website and Fobots Facebook Page.

* Check her schedule to see if she’ll be at an art show near you this summer, and click here to see which pieces are for sale online.

* Though all her pieces are one-of-a-kind, if you see something you like that’s already sold, just ask Amy and she can try to make something similar.

** Very cool: Amy can also make a custom fobot using your personal heirloom or collectible. Contact her for a quote including shipping and handling.

So, what’s in your basement?


Copyright © 2014 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

13 thoughts on “creativiTEA: loving amy flynn’s fabulous fobots!

  1. WOW.
    I found a place in Crockett where a man makes robots out of HUGE old pieces of whatever, and I am charmed by that, but THESE!!!!!!!!! The kitchen tins!!!! Oh, the whimsy.

    Good thing there are calendars.


  2. WOW! They’re funny and whimsical. I showed the link to M, who owns a helicopter sculpture made from spark plugs and other assorted metal pieces. He loved it!


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