Newton’s Daydream is a 30-foot, audio kinetic ball sculpture at the Clark Planetarium in Salt Lake City, Utah. This one-of-a-kind ball machine sculpture uses two sizes of balls so that the action at the top can be seen by viewers below. The sculpture is located on the stairway in the planetarium’s main lobby and is a focal point for all visitors.

 

The artwork spans two stories allowing visitors to explore its intricate maze of tracks from two vantage points. The large vertical space allows for some exciting movement, as balls roll down spirals and staircases and fly through the air moving through intricate devices such as the orrery, climber, wraparound, and spinner. The sculpture features an interactive wheel where visitors can affect the pathway of the balls causing them to climb up and roll down in a chaotic fashion.

 

The piece contains approximately 300’ of track and extends into the ceiling of the space with a swirling path meandering around seven illuminated planet-like spheres. We recently restored this sculpture integrating a new comet-like lighting effect in which rings of LED lights wrap around the track. As the balls move through the rings, the integrated LED lights are illuminated, matching the ball’s motion and creating a dynamic glow of moving light across the ceiling. 

Date:

2005, 2016

Location:
Clark Planetarium, Salt Lake City, UT

Dimensions:

30' x 15' x 36'

Artist:

George Rhoads

Creative Machines

Newton's Daydream

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