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Music of the Elements/Dance of Time    
Fabrication: Ferrocraft

Needham Highschool
Needham, MA
August 2008

These 3 sculptural components reflect the hope, aspirations, wonder and the journey that students in Needham experience during their years of study within the school system.

The pieces combine concepts from science, environmental technology, philosophy, and nature. The elements of nature in Music of the Elements/Dance of Time are made visible through reflective, translucent, and light-emitting-receiving materials.

Infinity of the Mind
consists of an arch of dichroic glass and stainless steel framed by the atrium window, and a stainless steel spiral suspended within the atrium, both depicting the idea of infinity.

The stainless steel spiral illustrates the projection of numbers into infinity from Athanasius Kircher's Ars magna scienda (1669) ancient formula for infinity. Can you find the formula? The carved numbers within the spiral represents man's attempt to organize a concept that is inconceivable, ... infinity ...; a term used in astronomy acknowledging the unknown limits of space.

Imagine the arch emerging from the number matrix spiral like a tail of a comet. It becomes a form on a deliberate path, with a finite life (like ours), burning brightly while on its course. The arched form is also inspired by the arched window detail on the oldest part of Needham High School, relating the old with the new.

The Blast-Off Benches
are below the spiral, which allows the viewer to imagine blasting off into infinity, by looking inside and up. The shapes of the Blast-Off Benches are inspired by WR (Wolf-Rayet) 104 , a spiraling star with 100,000 times more energy than our sun, a metaphor for the energy of youth.

The DNA Rocket is suspended over the lobby stairway. The Rocketís tail is a representation of a DNA strand, while still taking on the image of a rocket flying through space. The circular form relates the center of our own DNA to the center of the universe as we understand it and imagine it.

This installation was entirely funded from the generosity of private donors.


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© 2009 Joy Wulke