magnetic sculptures
April 14, 2010 2:27 PM   Subscribe

Robert Hodgin's Magnetic sculptures: "These forms are created with cylinder magnets, spherical magnets, and ball bearings. Magnetism is the only thing holding the forms together. They are fairly fragile and picking them up will likely crush them. All of the forms I created were variations of the 12 sided dodecahedron. This particular platonic solid seems to be the form the magnets are happiest with." [via]
posted by dhruva (11 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
How do they work?
posted by mullingitover at 2:43 PM on April 14, 2010 [7 favorites]

It's Platonic, like Plato's Retreat. So I think they work via fucking.
posted by adipocere at 2:50 PM on April 14, 2010

you could even sing this post's tags to the tune of that new ICP song.
posted by gman at 2:57 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]

i buy rare eath on occasion... anybody have other suggestions?
posted by wackoacko at 3:09 PM on April 14, 2010

Can a magnet really be happy? I mean, I thought they were all bipolar.
posted by kuujjuarapik at 3:09 PM on April 14, 2010 [2 favorites]

I was looking at video earlier of a guy making bubble icosahedrons with rare earth magnets.
posted by cropshy at 3:18 PM on April 14, 2010 [1 favorite]

I sometimes buy peculiarly-shaped magnets on eBay from one particular supplier. Oh, you funky cone magnets — so fragile, pointy, and powerful! You might try that. Supposedly, the finger-fitting rings are good for magic tricks. Get some ferrofluid and viewing film. Amazing Magnets are fairly decent, too. If you place one of their neodymium lovelies on a low friction surface, you can make it wiggle with another magnet about a meter off. A meter, for something so small. The weight of the whole Earth pulls against one of these magnets, yet a tiny shiny bit of allow can best gravity with a twitch of the wrist, such is the awesome power of EM forces.

I have an unhealthy obsession with some magnets, in particular the hideous, large ones from United Nuclear. Scroll down. Can you imagine one of those deadly hockey pucks suddenly soaring across the room, heading straight for its twin, only to mash any flesh together between them, then shatter into a cloud of sharp fragments, madly whirling due to the unpredictable interplay of rotational inertia and electromagnetic fields dancing about? The text might as well read STRONG ENOUGH TO OBLITERATE A CHILD'S HAND!

I feel like an Algernon Blackwood protagonist, knowing that I ought not to mess with forces beyond my ability to control, and yet I want to buy two of them. So far, only the price has kept me safe.
posted by adipocere at 3:22 PM on April 14, 2010 [4 favorites]

posted by sexyrobot at 3:24 PM on April 14, 2010

i buy rare eath on occasion... anybody have other suggestions?

I see that the ones I have are labeled Magcraft, they are nice, good packaging. He must have developed some pretty specialized techniques. I find that one wrong move and, snap!, all the magnets have rearranged themselves into a single long line. Either that, or one goes shooting across the room.
posted by StickyCarpet at 4:07 PM on April 14, 2010

I think one of his specialized techniques is that the center nodes are non-magnetic ball bearings, so there isn't the problem of reverse polarity.
posted by kuujjuarapik at 5:03 PM on April 14, 2010

I saw these in person a couple months ago and had to strongly resist the urge to SQUEEZE them.
posted by oneirodynia at 7:20 PM on April 14, 2010

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