Fractal Rock is the recipient of a Burning Man Honorarium Arts grant and is brought to you by math geeks who love to build things and climb things. We hope that you interact with this piece at Burning Man this year, and can viscerally experience our math-based sculpture.
When Fractal Rock is on the playa, it will appear as an ossified helical structure that seems to glow from within. We want it to appear as if it is grown from the earth, an organic structure designed using math and built to scale through the love and labor of people who are inspired by its intriguing shape and mathematical foundations.
We want you to be able to walk up to the piece, where there will be a description of its philosophy, and then climb it. We hope that you’ll chat with the others who gather in Fractal Rock’s inner cavities and stare out at the goings-on and passers-by of the playa from atop your mathematical perch.
Fractal Rock will be finished in white fiberglass, and the texture of the surface will be similar to the texture of rock climbing holds, making it fun and easy to climb!
Fractal Rock was designed using fractals.
The following video is a good 2-minute explanation of fractals and how to generate a simple one.
In practice, fractals can be incredibly complicated and incredibly beautiful due to the ingenuity of the humans who mess around with them! We were inspired by the beauty of fractals, and the Julia set in particular. Our shape is a new perspective on fractal art. We used several Julia set fractals we liked and used software to mathematically interpolate (i.e. connect) these different patterns in three dimensions, so that we could build a 3D shape.
We hope that our piece inspires wonder in all those who interact with it, both at Burning Man and wherever we install it after the event. We especially hope that we can inspire people to be interested in creating their own math, art, or both.
(Amazed by art at Burning Man 2015)
Stijn van der Linden, aka Virtox
Say hi to Stijn! :)
Stijn is an artist who started his career as an electrical engineer. He's the innovator behind the idea of using Julia set fractals to create mesmerizing 3D shapes. He's got quite a following within the 3D printing community, and his Julia set vases that he's published on Thingiverse are some of the most beautiful things I've ever seen. Here's a link to Virtox's Thingiverse gallery.
Here are some pictures of other works by Virtox. Beautiful, right?
We want to raise $8,000 on Indiegogo. Where are those funds going?
Here's an explanation of our budget:
Total project cost: $29,700 (including Indiegogo fees/rewards)
Indiegogo target: $8,000
Other funds raised: $22,000 (from Burning Man and personal donors)
You can also take a look at our timeline below:
I'll deal with the simpler issue first: transportation. Our plan is to build Fractal Rock in four sections, with one vertical axis and one horizontal (but not in the most obvious way). All pieces will be fully constructed at our workshop, and once completed, we will load them onto a 24' flatbed truck, bring them on playa, and use on-playa cranes to assemble the pieces.
If you've been following this project, you'll notice that we've changed from our former plans to use foam to construct the piece and will now be building the structure purely out of steel and fiberglass! We're constructing the piece in the following four parts:
We started our structural analysis of the piece early on to ensure that it would be safe, and as mentioned above, we have been working with an external engineering firm that has experience with Burning Man projects. Their expertise and our research will yield a beautiful, strong piece.
We're doing our build in the Bay Area, and could use assistance on any of the following tasks:
If you're interested, please fill out this form!
Thank you for reading about our project. We hope you get a chance to experience Fractal Rock in some way, whether it is through our 3D printed rewards, VR experience, in-person at Burning Man, or even just through this campaign page! If we see you at the burn, please be sure to say hi! If you want to reach out, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you to Bryan Perez, our talented videographer!
Timeline: This is a large project, and Burning Man is in 3 months. This is why we've spent the last several months planning, finding a crew, and figuring out exactly how we're going to build this thing. We've worked out a build schedule that will ensure we get the piece done in time. We're also working with experienced fabricators who know the ins and outs of building for Burning Man, so we're confident we can do this well.
Budget: One risk is that there could be unforeseen costs that might go way over budget and risk the project. In order to prevent this danger from occurring, we have researched all costs carefully. In many cases, we've been discussing costs for months with vendors and laborers. We're pretty confident in our budgeting for this project. There is, of course, the risk that we will not meet the fundraising goal. If we do not meet the Indiegogo goal, we will still complete this project (this is possible because of the grant we have received) but might have to complete it at slightly smaller scale.
Structural engineering: We've been consulting with an external structural engineering firm, who are working with us to design the structure and give it an engineer's stamp of approval.
Crew: We've got a solid core team, consisting of the two artists, a project manager, a lighting and build manager, and a fiberglass expert. This is the minimum that we would need in order to make this project a reality, but if you are interested in volunteering, we'd love your help! Please email us at email@example.com and/or fill out this form!
Rewards: The hand-crafted rewards (the 3D printed models and bases) have been planned for and are already being worked on. I have also identified and vetted suppliers for the rewards that are not hand-crafted and have done careful research into shipping and material costs for all rewards. These estimates have been included in our budget calculations.