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The Susurrus of the Sea

George W. Hart


Soft waves, suggestive of both sky and water, travel around the globe along six different criss-crossing equators. The susurrus (murmur) of the sea is suggested as a sense of harmony in this sphere.   Here, it is hanging in my backyard in front of some nice Fall foliage. It is spherical, hollow, very light and open

Technically difficult, the 60 transparent blue acrylic plastic components had to be made very precisely to fit together. It was almost a year between when I started this and when I finally finished because I gave up for a long while. Heat-formed, as in I'd like to make one thing perfectly clear, the components were formed and assembled on special jigs which imparted the proper dimensions and angles.

Mathematically, the blue spirals are helixes that follow the edges of an icosidodecahedron.  This is a polyhedron that was known to the ancient Greeks, but the oldest known drawing of it is by Leonardo da Vinci. Formally constructed of triangles and pentagons (which show up here as the openings) it can also be seen as an arrangement of six equatorial regular decagons. Each equator makes ten twists in a complete path, crossing the other five equators at two opposite points.  If one “walks along” a dark blue edge, making right-angle turns where edges meet, one traces a large five-pointed star before returning to one’s starting point.



copyright 1999, George W. Hart