Per Pices’ Kickstarter intro, “In western astrology, the story of Pisces involves two fish (Venus and Cupid) that tie each other with a string to swim away from the mythological monster Typhon. I represent this story in my kinetic sculpture that uses a single nylon string bound between two motors creating beautiful standing waves.”
The device is beautiful indeed, and as the string spins under carefully controlled light, it can resemble a sort of ‘glitchy’ hourglass, an S curve of light, a flashing lightning effect and more. The trick here is that as the string spins between two motors, it produces a standing wave which oscillates but doesn’t change in amplitude. This forms a predictable repeating pattern, which is lit up by RGB LEDs at just the right times so that it can appear stationary — or to be moving in designed patterns due to persistence of vision and the stroboscopic effect.
11 patterns are planned so far, and user interface is provided via a pair of dials. One can even touch the string to create a sort of manual effect when so desired. The string rotates in its housing 60–90 times per second, generating a sort of white noise effect, as well as a draft that circulates are about the room, which could be a nice bonus.
The device is available at various pledge levels, with a lamp starting at around $184 USD. Interestingly, this includes Arduino source code along with STL files, so you could modify it to suit your tastes. You can also buy the design files by themselves for ~$30 USD.
Of course, if this seems familiar, it’s not the only POV display we’ve seen here. You can check out this RGB Time Fountain that uses carefully-controlled lighting to make water droplets appear to travel up, down, or even stay still!
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Author: Jeremy S. Cook