Inspiring Art

Using Moiré Patterns in a Different Art Form

I have often used moiré effects in the designs of my kinetic sculptures.  You will notice them especially in my sculptures with stronger optical designs like Shimmer , Radiance or Illusion. A moiré effect is a “secondary and visually evident superimposed pattern created when two patterns overlap” but they aren't limited to forms in motion. Andrea Minini is a graphic designer based in Milan that uses this effect in a very different application. She creates vibrant posters of abstract animals using the moiré effect. Here are some dramatic examples.


And one example that is not an animal, just an abstract design:


Her work is available for purchase from Society 6 or My Modern Shop.

Searching for Sculptures Across America

It has been quite awhile since I've posted on the blog and for good reason. Marji and I have just returned from a 7 week road trip exploring America. We left on September 5th with few specific plans but several broad goals. One of those goals was to experience any sculpture parks we traveled near. Some folks collect baseball parks, others national parks. We collect sculpture parks.  The quest was inspired by our frequent visits to both Storm King Art Center (Mountationville, NY) and Grounds for Sculpture (Hamilton, NJ).

We started with a Google search that ended at a Wikipedia article listing sculpture parks around the world. We concentrated on the USA for this trip! The first park to cross our path was the Scandaga River Sculpture Park in Wells, NY. It was in a remote area near the Adirondacks and we had our doubts as we followed the GPS. But it led us to the beautiful garden of artist John Van Alstine and his studio. It was our lucky day because the artist was home. We had a delightful visit.

Sculpture and Photo credit • John Vanalstine

John told us of a recently published book by Francesca Cigola titled Art Parks: A Tour of America's Sculpture Parks and Gardens, and recommended it as a resource for our travels. We located it on Amazon and had it waiting for us at a friend's home as we passed near Pittsburgh.We used it extensively and adjusted routes to view the parks shared in this book. It directed us to a wide range of parks and wonderful sculpture across America. We saw very little new kinetic work (more info later), but many exciting sculptures.   

The book was helpful in locating some extremely interesting parks. Be sure to cross reference things with online resources because some have restricted viewing. Of note, the northeast has the highest concentration of sculpture parks by far and we never knew about a host of them. We didn't visit any of those because we can see them as day trips from home. We have some interesting weekend trips ahead!

Here is a quick overview of a few of our discoveries.

Normade by Plensa at PapaJohn Sculpture Park Des Moines, Iowa


Sequences by Richard Serra at Cantor Art Center, Stanford University


A Flock of Signs by Kim Beck at 100 Acres in Indianapolis, IN


Our trip was exciting on many levels but especially because of the art we saw, both natural and man made.  I will continue to share additional information about the various sculptures parks we visited across America in future blog posts. Check back regularly. You might discover a place you need to visit!



Inspiring Art: The Singing Ringing Tree


Some of our favorite places to visit are sculpture gardens including Storm King in NY State. We have started collecting ideas of other places to visit through recommendations and web searching. This is how we stumbled upon The Singing Ringing Tree in England.

Image Source:

This award-winning sculpture is a fascinating combination of man-made metals and nature's breath - the wind. It stands just under 10 feet high in the Pennine Mountains looking over Burnley, in Lancashire, England. This sculpture was enginered by the British architecture firm Tonkin Liu. It is made of glavanized steel tubes that harness the wind to send low melodic tones over the land. Here is an excellent YouTube video about the process of developing and making the sculpture:

Someday when we make our way back to Europe this will certainly be on our list of places to visit. Have you seen The Singing Ringing Tree in person? What were your thoughts?


Inspiring Art: MÖBIUS from Eness

There are many sources of inspiration within the world of art. Here is an interesting use of sculpture and video to present motion and to capture people's interaction with the sculpture.

MÖBIUS from ENESS on Vimeo.

This project was comissioned by Federation Square in Melbourne. The sculpture consists of twenty-one large triangles. According to it's creators, 

"MÖBIUS is a sculpture that can be configured into many cyclical patterns and behave as though it is eating itself, whilst sinking into the ground. The result is an optical illusion and a time-lapse of people interacting with the
sculpture and moving through Melbourne's landmark location throughout the day."

The animation of MÖBIUS took place over two weeks on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday between the May 6th and 20th 2011. Here is the video of the making of the animation video. The process is quite fascinating. 

Making of MÖBIUS from ENESS on Vimeo.

The still pictures of the MÖBIUS are also quite striking with their geometric forms and creation of interesting spaces.