This project was inspired partly by the work of William Kentridge. The class directive was to create something that would change in perception as it was rotated, as much of Kentridge's work was about creation and destruction. I liked the idea of small bits of white combining and mixing against a black background. This inspired me to make something star-themed. I took a trip to an antiques market to get materials I could combine: I was looking for some type of dark background, and some small white objects for the foreground. I found a bucket of small shells. I knew I wanted to work in the idea of stars in the sky being more numerous than sand on the beach, so shells made the perfect metaphor. And a Pavarotti record fit the bill perfectly for for a round black background.
This was my first attempt at the concept and was used as a learning experience/sketch for the next creation.
The Hand of God
The original goal for this one was to have the record and the top section counter-rotating, with some alignment organizing to spell out a message. Ultimately poor planning and limited time meant I was unable to fully realize the idea. I spent a lot of time experimenting with wire mechanics making a system that would be interesting to turn while not being ugly. The result is a kinetic sculpture reminiscent of the work of Arthur Ganson. The idea for mounting the record was inspired by Michaelangelo's 'Creation of Adam' where the Creator's hand is reaching out of the heavens with an extended finger. This image blends with an atlas theme to portray God holding up the spiral galaxy.
The Sand and the Stars
The final sculpture was created due to my dissatisfaction with the result of my second attempt. I felt the "stars" were too large in relation to the overall sculpture, but since I had no smaller shells, the solution was to scale the entire project up. Continuing with the sand/stars theme I used a sand filled bottle for the base. I also realized that real galaxies rotate coherently at the same overall speed, so this one I made as one fixed unit.