Pillars of the Community
Bird Park
Moving Pictures
Yantra
Kandinsky’s Garden
Light is Life
Garden Variety
Sierra Club Installation

Public Art
Moving Pictures

 
 

Moving Pictures, 2001

A zoetrope, or "wheel of life," is an optical device that demonstrates a fascinating physiological phenomenon called "persistence of vision." This principle was first documented in 1820 by Peter Mark Roget. The zoetrope was one of the most important discoveries leading to the invention of motion pictures. When French inventor, Pierre Desvignes, marketed the optical toy in Paris in 1865 it became an overnight sensation. In America, toy magnate, Milton Bradley began selling zoetropes in the late 1860s. The zoetropes' popular appeal lasted until the introduction of real movies in 1895. Zoetropes began to gather dust in Victorian attics and museum basements.

 

The zoetropes mechanics are refreshingly simple. The drum with 12 equally spaced slips is mounted on a hub which allows the drum to spin. A strip containing a series of progressively changing images is coiled around the inside of the drum. When the drum is spun, the viewer looks through the slits and sees the images magically come to life.

 

With "Moving Pictures", we reinvent the zoetrope as the featured art element in the Downtown Paseos.The base of the zoetropes is mounted to a stand which is bolted to the street. Each stand and each zoetrope is unique. The stands are clad with stone, brick, wood, tile or metal to accentuate the surrounding architecture and reference the particular nuances of each location.

 

The concept of the zoetrope is especially significant to Culver City because it combines a sense of history and the origins of cinema. The zoetropes celebrate the past and create a link to the Downtown Plaza Project.

 

 
   
 
 
 

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