Panamarenko's experimental flying machines modeled on the motion of birds, insects, and human craft have been greeted with wonder and acclaim since the 1960s. In his exploration of the potentially fertile relationships linking technology and nature, Panamarenko considers issues of imagination as well as function. Mixing the scientific with the artistic, the monumental Aeromodeller (1969-1971) solidified this Belgian artist's thinking and established his significant reputation. Powered by four engines, this large-scale hybrid cocoon-blimp is composed of a transparent inflatable sac and a gondola for passengers. "Orbit"" pairs Aeromodeller with a new piece titled Raven's Variable Matrix (2000), which looks to the aerodynamics of propulsion as the model for its engineering.
Panamarenko was born in Antwerp in 1940. He died in Brakel, Belgium, in 2019.