Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Arthur Ganson

Until quite recently I'd never heard of kinetic sculptor Arthur Ganson. I think, now, that he may be my favorite "artist." I use the quote marks here only because I don't think "art" is a big enough term to contain what he does.

You'll rarely see/hear me blathering about art and meaning and all that stuff, but when I look at Ganson's pieces I'm utterly mesmerized and feel as though I'm as close as humanly possible to gazing at meaning itself. (Yeah, I'm blathering.)

If you're not familiar with what Ganson does, you should check out his YouTube site. Here are a couple of clips. Maybe you'll get what I'm on about.
Each scrap is activated in two places. The mind is very acute and recognizes instantly the manner in which energy flows through a system. Here, the center point always leads the peripheral point. This is vitally important in allowing the scrap to feel as if it is flying.

"This is vitally important in allowing the scrap to feel as if it is flying." Damn. I realize that not everybody looks at the world the same way I do, but, but... Damn...

If you find that philosophically depressing (I don't--what's the point!?), the next one may cheer you up a bit. It's a variation on a theme, but it strikes me as looking at things a bit more optimistically.

In this machine, the chair is passive and all motion is due to interference by the cat. The large disk at the back serves to both counterbalance the arm and give more mass to the chair itself. The motion of the chair is complex and will never repeat.

I think it was Susan who pointed me to Ganson's stuff, but I can't remember when/where/how/etc.

See also Arthur Ganson's Machines (official website).

1 comment:

  1. Yup, that would be me. Glad you like him. He is the artist in residence at M.I.T.