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Petals 1-3

Three paraboloid segments, each about 16 feet in length, made from aluminum, installed in a flowing horizontal sequence:

-- Edward Tufte

-- Edward Tufte

How was aluminum finished? The finish implies softness with a nice degree of reflection. Do you have any pictures at sunrise or sunset?


-- Sean Gerety (email)

-- Edward Tufte

The pictures above illustrate some of the painted color fields generated by sunlight, ambient light, reflected light from the grass, and tree shadows falling onto the aluminum surfaces and edges of Petals 1-3.

The surface was ground several times in different ways: to clean off oxidation and mill marks, to introduce some surface variation, and then, by means of a belt sander, to create the patina of scratches running parallel with the ground. We did a lot of experiments during the last 18 months in order to find a good grinding sequence and pattern. Patterns that work in small areas, we repeatedly discovered, did not necessarily work over the vast surface area of each petal--just like a floor tile pattern looks great in a store sample but then doesn't work in practice over a larger area.

These results demonstrate the many interesting and beautiful visual activities generated by sculptures constructed from quietly reflective aluminum and stainless steel. Each day, and sometimes each hour, there is something different to see.

The photographs do not of course catch the dynamic range of the actual light, particularly those that show directly reflected sunset light (such as the bottom photograph).

In the third row of photographs, students of color will note the edge fluting at the intersection of the 2 adjacent images. On the left side of the edge, note the darkened color opposite the lighter color on the right; then above, the lightened color opposite the dark green. Covering the right image with a piece of paper will reveal that this effect is an optical artifact; we're seeing something that isn't there.

-- ET

The 3 pictures in the June 22, 2006 contribution were taken by Graham Larkin, Curator of European and American Art, National Gallery of Canada, and otherwise known to readers of this board for his role in my sculpture Larkin's Twig.

There's nothing like some fresh eyes behind the camera.

-- Edward Tufte

Petals 1-12

Petals 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 are now installed up in our new sculpture fields at Hogpen Hill in Woodbury, Connecticut. These Petals are much more scattered over the open land compared to the installation of Petals 1-3 in our old fields. The scattered Petals hold together because of their bright contrast to the land. Of course the negative spaces generated by the scattered Petals differ from those of the tightly spaced petals.

Below, we see Abby, Anna, and Zerlina in relation to Petals 4, 5, and 6. The distance between the near and far Petals is about 500 feet. For comparison, the next picture shows the close-together Petals 1, 2, and 3.

-- Edward Tufte

-- Edward Tufte

Response to Petals 1-12

-- Edward Tufte

Threads relevant to sculpture:
Ace and Porta do multimedia
Bird Series
Aluminum and stainless steel; many, many pieces moving in the air.
Bouquet sculpture series--and Walking, Seeing, Constructing
Beginning of Bouquet series (now 7); along with theoretical statement beginning the volume 5 project.
Buddha with Bird Nest: sculpture
Complex sculptural shapes
Dear Leader I: landscape sculpture May 2006
Narrative piece about some mysterious porcelain objects in a stainless steel perspective box.
Dog sculpture (Porta the Portuguese Water Dog)
ET Modern
ET museum/gallery in the Chelsea Art District in New York 2010-2013.
ET show at George Champion Modern Shop
ET gallery show in Woodbury, Connecticut.
Escaping Flatland sculptures
Ten large stainless steel pieces in the landscape generate many views and painted color fields as the sun moves across the sky and the season changes.
Feynman Diagrams, Edward Tufte sculptures and exhibits
The Conceptual and Cognitive Art of Feynman Diagrams. Art show + 16 page essay.
Flame Theater
Georgia O'Keeffe and Escaping Flatland
Hogpen Hill #1: sculpture installed August 2006
First major piece (24 feet light, stainless steel) installed in new 122 acre sculpture park underway in Woodbury, Connecticut.
Ironstone artworks, torqued steel
Magritte's Smile
Masks Quartet, 2011
bronze casting
Megaliths, Continuous and Silent, Stuctures of Unknown Significance
Stone+air artworks. Scuplture, megaliths
Millstone sculpture series
Massive industrial pieces sorting out circles and light. Redesigning and repurposing scrap from nuclear power plant.
Multiplicity in visual experiences (ET presentation for a museum show)

Nine reviews of ET's Aldrich Museum sculpture show
ET museum show in Connecticut 2009-2010
Paradox sculptures
Philosophical Diamond Signs
Philosophical alerts, imperatives, and thoughts about the path past and future.
Rocket Science
~32 feet (10 m) high and ~72 feet (22 m) long, and is constructed from ~48,000 pounds (22,000 kg) of rusting scrap steel
Rocket Science #2 (Lunar Lander)
Rocket Science 3: Airstream Interplanetary Explorer
Sculpture Forgings
Steel forging mounted on wood base. Blacksmithing video.
Sculpture: Negative space studies
Three table pieces; strong positive elements create active negative volumes (the air) to torque. Movies.
Seeing Around: New ET essay published
Skewed Machine
Spring Arcs, an ET landscape sculpture
Four solid stainless steel arcs in the landscape. Long thread, many photographs on meaning, construction, viewing of the piece.
Stainless steel images: anisotropic calligraphy
Big series of engraved 3D anisomorphic images that move with light.
Steel sculptures
Rough, thick, rusting steel, with surface images in the steel's patina.
Table sculptures
About a dozen major table pieces in wood, steel, stainless steel.
The Drawing Center fax show: ET exhibits
The Twigs: Landscape artworks made from steel and air
The beautiful Twig. Steel, 32 feet high, with accompanying thread on reading the piece and the complexities of modeling large 3D objects.
Theater Museum artworks
Tong Bird of Paradise
Towers: a new memorial for 9/11
Visual complexities of light, shadow, perpsective. Perforated stainless steel.
ZZ Smile (Zerlina's Smile)

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