Tinkertoy iceberg

I finally got a chance to stop by the Art Institute last night to see an installation by Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle. The exhibit is a two-story nylon lattice fabricated from a radar/sonar scan of an actual iceberg off the coast of Newfoundland. Basically he’s taken a structure that is solid for a moment in time (it calves, melts, sinks, reforms), mapped it, broken it down to its wireframe, and created it using rapid prototyping techniques. The result is a complex natural polygon that floats inside a stairwell at the ARTIC.

Much of my work involves scanning artifacts that have not changed in eons in order to most realistically reproduce and preserve them. Which is why Manglano-Ovalle’s process — scanning an ever-changing structure to break it down to its basic geometry and build it back up — is a bit of an intellectual delight.

My friend Craig noticed this little detail. Manglano-Ovalle includes a 512MB memory key in the lattice. A docent noted that all the data from the iceberg scan is contained on that key.

As a bonus we popped down to see the stunning Photo-Respirations exhibit. Tokihiro Sato uses long exposure times, a flashlight (by night), and a sun-reflecting mirror (by day) to create eerie scenes puntucated with will-o’-the-wispy blurs of light. Definitely worth a look.

Thanks for the tip, Matt.