Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Inspiration for Final Project

Inspiration TreeTime by Bruce Cannon http://electronicsculpture.brucecannon.org/sculptures/treetime/treetime.htm “This ‘improved’ tree has six large articulated joints fabricated from copper and brass, moved by cables pulled by gearmotors at the tree's base. In addition, there are sixteen small motorized branchlets.” I absolutely feel in love with this sculpture the first time I saw it. It really inspired me to do something with nature. I thought about making giving blades of grass, leaves, flowers, etc… articulated joints but I didn’t want to do a project too similar.

Wind Leaves, Ned Kahn


“A series of 7, 30’ tall, aluminum and stainless structures that turn in the wind and serve as a symbolic hinge between the Milwaukee Art Museum and the new Discovery World / Pier Wisconsin complex. The surfaces of the sculptures are covered by thousands of small stainless steel disks that ripple in the wind. Ball bearings in the support columns allow the sculptures to rotate and reveal the direction of the wind.”

This is the second project I found that I had to restrain myself from making something too similar too. It is so beautiful I think it would be awesome to have a mini one on campus, maybe near the Nott.

Encircled Stream by Ned Kahn


“The courtyard is centered around a large whirlpool that rhythmically fills and drains every few minutes, suggesting the countless cycles of floods that have sculpted the terrain of eastern Washington.”

This installation has a similar simulation of weather patterns.

Final Project Proposal



Broadcast the weather from locations around the world transporting the viewer to a foreign place.


  1. Weather Simulation
  2. Teleportation

Project Idea

My installation aims to place the viewer in a different location by simulating weather patterns from cities around the world. I see this as a type of ‘transportation’ that lets people, just for a moment; get a sense of how someone in a distant and foreign place feels at that very moment. I plan to use the internet to gather information from weather forecasts in different parts of the world. The information could be temperature, wind speed, precipitation which will be mimicked in my installation.

Structure 1: This was my original plan for my project (see sculpture 2 for my final sculpture)

The main part of the installation is a two level transparent box. The box is 24” x 36” (width X length). The bottom level will be 4” and will be filled with water. Attached to the bottom layer will be a fish tank filter to create bubbles. The top layer will have an assortment of LED’s, lasers and mirrors that can create a variety of light patterns. The installation is to be placed outdoors at a level where people can walk under it. It is not meant to be intrusive to people walking by or under so the supports for the structure are to be hidden. I imagine two long skinny shafts under the box supporting it’s’ length. The shafts will extend beyond the box about 4 feet and then will come down and plant into the ground.

Structure 2

After giving my presentation in class on my original structure I decided to change my project idea a little bit. Some of the concerns my professor had included time limits to build the project and actually being able to build the structure as I had planned outdoors. A lot of good ideas were thrown around by my classmates and I came up with a new idea that still incorporates the same project idea as before. This structure will be an installation that reads weather forecasts from five cities around the world that have different types of weather patterns. There will be a large thin transparent case filled with water suspended from the ceiling. At the bottom of the case will be 5 fish tank filters evenly spaced. Each will generate bubbles according to the precipitation of a specific city. The filters will either be left visible for the viewers or hidden by a metal casing.

I would like to add one more feature to my sculpture. I have two ideas for the second feature:

(1) add lights to represent temperature to have both temperature and precipitation displayed OR

(2) let the user pick if they want to see temperature, precipitation, or wind speed displayed and they bubbles will then correspond to a specific element.

My vision is for this to be a type of graph that gives the viewer a more intimate feeling and understanding of weather patterns. I imagine the sculpture to be suspended from the ceiling and will hang a couple feet above the ground. The viewers can walk all around the sculpture.