Weston Museum is pleased to share the story of Merlin Summers, a talented young artist and animation student at the University of the West of England. Merlin, who is 21 and has autism and learning difficulties, has crafted a life-size model of a Doctor Who Dalek. This model, made entirely from recycled materials found in skips, such as old cardboard, recycled coffee lids, a paint roller, a plunger, and a Kinder egg, is a brilliant example of creativity and ingenuity.

Merlin brought his Dalek to the Museum to deliver a talk alongside our Doctor Who exhibition, offering a unique insight into his creative process and the challenges he has overcome. His work not only adds a fascinating dimension to the exhibition but also serves as an inspiring reminder of what can be achieved with determination and a different way of seeing the world.

In creating his Dalek from up-cycled materials, Merlin demonstrates a remarkable ability to see potential in the everyday, turning what others might disregard into something captivating and iconic. This approach not only showcases his resourcefulness but also highlights an important message about sustainability.

Merlin’s achievements are a testament to the fact that autism, often perceived through a narrow lens, is no barrier to creativity and success. His story reflects the diverse talents that people on the autism spectrum bring to the arts and beyond.

It’s our hope that his story will encourage others to follow their passions and recognise the valuable contributions that individuals with autism make to our community.