1.11.12

Jiggling Atoms

Work for the fantastic Jiggling Atoms project.  See website here.  Five introductory physics lectures, followed by two months to absorb and expand, led to 'A View of Physics', Painting I & II.





























The two paintings reveal two different viewpoints of the same landscape, according to two perceptions that I have experienced of the atom.  Everything that we know in the world is made up of these tiny building blocks, even everything that appears to us as a solid.  This drastically changes my view of the world.  If nothing is solid or continuous, and instead all mass is the interaction of atoms, then (technically) nothing can have any edges.  To quote Feynman: ‘’the world is a dynamic mess of jiggling things if you look at it the right way.”  Painting I plays with this idea of jiggling interaction.  A hilltop, lakeside view becomes an abstract blur of energetic squiggles that hint at the perpetual motion of everything that makes it up.   But the behaviour of atoms is dictated by how we look at them.  No longer tracing the individual atom, or chasing their individual motion, Painting II presents atoms in terms of their relationships with each other, and their arrangement in patterns.   Patterns have rules by which the atoms abide.  Or more aptly, that they dictate.  And nature can be described by these rules.  Rules can be described by mathematics.  Invisible now, under the paint, is a geometrical structure upon which the landscape has been built. The landscape exists because of the rules.  But of course there are anomalies: aspects of nature that we can observe, but cannot explain.  These exceptions are the floating shapes that do not quite fit in the structure.    

Painting II in progress:





























Acrylic on board, with homemade oak frame - 









































The two paintings hanging in the Rag Factory for the Jiggling Atoms exhibition:



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