Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Heavenly Piece


Tools of divination. Enigmatic devices. At the intersection of science and art, physics and metaphysics, theory and mythology, lie objects of intense intrigue. The Claude Glass and Camera Obscura are two moments of fascination that lie at this nexus. Another is the Nebra Sky Disk. A portable planetarium, and a work of extreme beauty, the Nebra Sky Disk is a Bronze Age relic, the size of a large dinner plate. Crafted in 1600 BC, the Sky Disk inhabited the earthly realm until 1999 when it was unearthed at Nebra in Germany, over three millennia later. It was such a remarkable object that it was initially considered to be a fake find, a fabricated artefact. The disk acts as a celestial clock or calendar, where it could be held up to the heavens, and aligned with features of the night sky. Notches around the edges as well as the constellations and planetary bodies depicted provided the coordinates for connecting with the vastness of lunar and solar time.


1 comment:

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