An Interactive Electromagnetic Kinetic Sculpture (2016)
God's Eye offers a rare opportunity to notice the behavior of magnets in motion affecting one another at a distance, inviting us to trace magnetic fields which are ordinarily hidden from sight. Magnetic balls are seemingly propelled by their own creature-like desires through a sculptural design which creates a bounded but chaotic balance between the forces of gravity and electromagnetic induction. This sculpture of loosely coupled rolling magnets is a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. Magnets are carefully positioned to allow them to simultaneously shape, share and effect the character of each others complex behavior of motion. Through magnetic attraction and repulsion and proximal distance, this dynamic process creates an emergent field of hive-like motion.
A variable speed sine wave (2-10hz) is sent into copper coils creating a magnetic field which invisibly moves a magnetic ball placed inside each coil. Yet this magnetic response is constrained by force of gravity as each ball rolls in its own parabolic dish. One magnet's motion affects the motion of another in close proximity through the field disturbance created as the relative position of north and south poles of each magnet change with respect to one another. Users alter the frequency of the signal sent into the copper coils by placing their hand in varying proximity to the work.
Through the constraint of curved dishes, minimal friction and a yarn "tail", one can see the effect that magnets have on each other at long distances, revealing their inner character. This dynamic kinetic process provides a suggestive window into many other mysteriously complex, yet captivating systems found in nature.