A New York-based artist was recently invited to Scotland to create a giant piece of high-tech artwork made entirely out of balloons.
EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND - What does art - balloon art, no less - have to do with science? That's a question best posed to New York-based artist Jason Hackenwerth, who was recently invited over to Scotland to make, as part of the 25th annual International Science Festival in Edinburgh, "Pisces", a giant, absolutely mammoth structure entirely out of around 10,000 - well, as he likes to call them...
"It's a complex series of interconnected latex membranes filled with carbon dioxide and amoebazoids," Hackenwerth says. "I'm having fun because this is the science festival. In reality, these are latex balloons, not that different from what clowns might use for children. But I'm using thousands and thousands of them and weaving them together in a fashion to create a massive spiral form, and this form will represent the way the universe spirals, the way seashells for with hyperbolic geometry in the ocean, and our double helix, which is also a spiral."
Hackenworth has made several other balloon sculptures like these, most with science-based themes.
You can no doubt appreciate how time consuming this can be. What you might not expect, though, is how dangerous, in a sense, working with this many balloons can be.
"They are constantly popping," Hackenwerth says. "You can hear all the noise going on. So we wear earplugs, we wear knee pads and wrist guards and finger tape, and all of this is protecting us from this material. Because when we're using thousands and thousands of balloons and tying them so many times, it takes its toll. So, safety first, kids."
Thanks to support from Visit Scotland, the Scottish tourism board, NY1 is going to be able to bring you more news from this year's festival in next month's episode of "It Ain't Rocket Science", which you'll be able to see here or on our parent company, Time Warner Cable's www.connectamillionminds.com.