The Crescent Bell


The Crescent Bell is a work to explore how cymatics and computer modeling can be used in the creation of sculpture, which may shed light upon interesting material acoustics and bell making techniques.

Concept Text

I initially began working with a 'moon-in-sun' design. It's been used in some Egyptian motifs, by the celts, and others. For me it also relates to a bell curve distribution where the far ends head off to meet each other.

Crescent Bell

I had then begun thinking about how this form could be rendered sculpturally, and I imagined a cast metal sphere in which there was an internal hollow / cavity. It seemed unlikely that there would be any way to cast this out of metal; the only way that occurred to me was a metal rapid-prototyping printer. However, this latter option seemed to be unlikely to be able to produce a Bell - which was the form that was beginning to occur to me. I then began to think if there was an intentional way that I could pierce into the inner space, and thus the connection to the Cymatics work of Hans Jenny began. His work exemplified the effect of vibration open a medium. The energy of oscillations through an object will cause highs and lows of the energy on the surface of the object. The energy nodes cause granules of material sprinkled on the surface to accumulate. In a liquid medium the effect is the opposite.

Just as flat surfaces exhibit cymatic characters at a given vibrational frequency, spatial curved forms also exhibit their own pattern. If a computer model for the transmission of vibrational energy could be applied to a metal sphere with an enclosed space then the cymatic pattern that woudl appear on the surface could be mapped 'virtually.' From the mapping, a pattern for piercing holes in the sphere to the inner space could be used ot make a bell. The pierced sphere could be re-modeled in the computer and cymatic pattern compared with the cast bell to compare the veracity of the computer model.

Perspective shot

From underneath
From Bottom
From inside
From Inside

Inspirational Stram-of-Consciousness

In 3D the bell would be sealed, but its 'cymatic topography' (ala finite element modeling, etc) may reveal sections that could be cut out to amplify certain harmonics - causing the 'negative acoustic space' to sink deeper. (as a phi-vortex funnel causes / encourages a laminar vacuum). Perhpas an acoustic 'holography' - i.e. the cancelation of majors to produce only-overtone sounds.


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