This week I experimented with sugar. I added color in different ways. Most importantly, I learned why recipes say not to stir the sugar after it starts boiling. A few times I accidentally stirred the sugar either while it was boiling or after it had started cooling. Bubbles rose from the bottom of the saucepan and instead of being malleable, it would harden to an opaque solid, similar to toffee. I bought 6 pounds of sugar, so I had plenty just in case of mistakes.
I think total I probably used 3-4 pounds of sugar in experimenting and the final project.
I wasn’t able to make that much progress this week because my LEDs still had not arrived. I ordered mini individual battery operated lights so that I could just hot glue them into a hole in my sugar bulbs. I also started looking for ways to present my project. My roommate suggested lining a box with white paper so it would reflect the light better.
Here are the pictures of my final project. I am going to bring one of the bulbs into class, but the rest of them have mostly melted.
First, this is the setup that was used. It is a box lined with white paper.
Here are the bulbs themselves:
My new candy thermometer just came in yesterday. The LED lights should be coming in tomorrow so I can start to play around with the orientation of the lights and how to hook them up. So far I have been messing around with different ways to incorporate color into the sugar. Originally I thought that I could just heat up a knife under hot water to cut holes in the sugar globes. Unfortunately, that doesn’t make the knife hot enough. Although it takes more cleanup, I got my torch from back home so I’ve been torching knives to get them hot. This has been giving a very clean cut and has been more fun.
My project ideas all revolve around using blown sugar. Although I’m not exactly sure what I will be doing yet, there is a lot of room for experimentation. Color can be mixed into the sugar, or directly painted on, or a sugar of a different color could be added to the outside. Patterns could also be carved into the sugar globe with a hot knife. I am going to add LED lights into the sugar globes and play around with the effects. Here is a picture of blown sugar globes, which would be my starting point.
Picture from http://sugarturntable.com/?p=266
My light artist is Dan Flavin. He was born in April 1933 and died November 1996. Although classified as a Minimalist, he saw himself as a “Maximalist” because he would make the most of materials typically considered harsh. Throughout his career Dan’s main medium was fluorescent light bulbs. This temporary material also separated him from typical minimalist artists who used materials like stone or metal. Unlike those materials, the light bulbs would eventually burn out. One of his main inspirations was Marcel Dunchamp’s “Readymades”, which were found manufactured objects that had been manipulated slightly in some way.
On his artwork Dan Flavin once said, “It is what it is and it ain’t nothing else.” It is lighting responding to different architectural settings.
The Diagonal of May 25, 1963 (to Constantin Brancusi)
icon V (Coran’s Broadway Flesh)
greens crossing greens (to Piet Mondrian who lacked green)
All images taken from www.nga.gov/
My name is Virginia Massa, but I prefer being called Ginny. I’m a sophomore Biology/ Biotechnology major. Art is something that I practice in different ways. For example, I love baking. I enjoy making things out of pulled sugar, or just twirling sugar threads and seeing what happens. I have also worked with fondant a bit and actually made the cake toppers for my brother’s wedding a few years ago. In fact, a lot of my art is done in the kitchen. My family gets pretty serious about pumpkin carving, and I’ve carved one for as long as I can remember. I have experience with digital art and 3D modeling. Although digital art can go past boundaries and be very creative, creating physical art is also fun.
I don’t have much experience with coding. In high school I took a computer science class where we were taught the basics of Python and Java, most of which I have forgotten. My roommate and I have messed around with her Arduino a little bit, so I have a small amount of experience with that.
Music, video games, and cartoons are some of my largest influence. I really enjoy listening to and singing along to music. My favorite songs tend to be classic rock and alternative. Although I am a bit rusty, I can play the flute and piano.
This is an example of a symmetry project that we were assigned in an art class. I really like working with the unique shape of the octopus. They are really interesting creatures.
These are the cake toppers I made for my brother’s wedding. They are only about two inches tall, and it was challenging to get small detail in. I am happy with the end result though.