George Hart – Echinoderms, Roads Untaken and Deep Structures

left: Snarl 2 – George Hart

A recent, random encounter in Florence with a reconstruction of Leonardo de Vinci’s illustration for Luca Pacioli’s De Divina Proportione triggered me to re-explore the complex mathematical sculptures of George Hart. In 1999 George recreated wooden models from Pacioli’s book including the Ycocedron Abscisus Vacuus and the stunningly complex Duodecedron Abscisus Elevatus Vacuus, the latter consisting of 120 equilateral triangles, made from 360 pieces of wood. These pieces are only a tiny fragment of George’s huge output of intricate geometric sculptures. Initially specialising in novel polyhedral structures he has produced hand made sculptures as well as utilising solid freeform fabrication techniques. More recently he has used rapid prototyping with laser sintering to explore forms from the hyperbolic domain. The popular Echinodermia spieces are good examples of the latter process.

George explains:

‘I like echinoderms, and these are toroidal sculptures inspired by their forms. They are not models of actual species, but more like some kind of parallel universe evolution of maniacal echinoderms. All are made by selective laser sintering of nylon, on an SLS machine, then I dyed them’

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