Sunday, August 27, 2006

Object Annex :: Pocket Maths

Look what we found whilst we were checking our pockets to make sure Inky wasn't secreted inside one of them. It is a miniature 'pocket' sculpture -- although Dir. de Plume suspects that it is actually a hypnotic device designed to snare the gaze and then trap it in endlessly involuted and semi-permeable surfaces. And it turns out that there's a lot more where that one came from...

Bathsheba Grossman dreams of bringing order to the world and, despite the white-anting of half-full glass-beholders Godel and Turing, she seems well on her way to doing it. Her chosen form of neatening messy reality is mathematics. “My work is about life in three dimensions: working with symmetry and balance, getting from a zero point to infinity, and always finding beauty in geometry” she explains.

The sculpture pictured demonstrates a triply periodic minimal surface, this one truncated to a rhombic dodecahedron.

“A minimal surface is a surface that is locally area-minimizing, that is, a small piece has the smallest possible area for a surface spanning the boundary of that piece. Soap films are minimal surfaces. Minimal surfaces necessarily have zero mean curvature, i.e. the sum of the principal curvatures at each point is zero. Particularly fascinating are minimal surfaces that have a crystalline structure, in the sense of repeating themselves in three dimensions, in other words being triply periodic.”

Triply Periodic Minimal Surfaces >>

See more of Bathsheba Grossman’s sculptures >>


Blogger Jim Stewart said...

These strike me as the modern parallels to those intricate turned-ivory items which were so popular in the old curiosity cabinets (and which have just been featured at the Kircher Society).

8:55 am  
Anonymous Cog said...

Funny you should mention that -- I swear those AthSoc people must have invested in telepathy... or perhpas someone inside MoD is feeding them my plans -- I was indeed going to follow it up with an exhibit on rose lathe turned objects like these...

But then they got there first... And this is not the first or even the 5th time that this has happened...

grrrr where's a landmime when you need one.

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