1988 – “Wendell” the Unicycle Rider – Garner Holt (American)
Wendell the Unicyclist premiered in 1988, and is the world’s only unicycle riding animatronic figure. He performs without any visible means of support.
Source: The Illusion of Life: Lifelike Robotics, Gene W. Poor, 1991
"… But the most impressive component Garner brings to the animation marketplace is an extraordinarily creative mind with superb problem-solving and operationalizing abilities.
The evidence of those qualities can be seen in his animated character "Wendell the Unicycle Rider." I saw this animated piece when I visited Garner's facility. It is spectacular! Like Kuebler's sculptings, a picture does not do Garner's work justice. If you are serious about three-dimensional animation, I encourage you to take a pilgrimage to San Bernardino to experience Garner's "Wendell" robot. If that's not possible–be patient. In the future, you're going to see a lot of Garner Holt!"
Wendell's clay head during the sculpting process.
The completed Wendell head prior to assembly on the robot body.
Garner Holt with "Wendell".