Luke Blackstone

Homeostasis 

Created for Bellevue College, Bellevue, Washington, 2017
Commissioned by the Washington State Arts Commission

stainless steel, blown glass, teflon, acrylic sheet, electrical and mechanical components

19.5 ft. X 9 ft. (variable) X 6 ft. (variable)
Homeostasis was installed adjacent to the newly built Health Sciences building on the campus of Bellevue College. When all elements of the human body and mind are in place, a state of wellness is likely to follow. Likewise, when all elements of an organizational system are in place, sustainability is likely to follow. When elements are in disarray, a sense of confusion and dis-ease may occur. These principles formed the development of this sculpture. Health Sciences incorporates a plethora of microscopic elements (molecules, cells, atoms, chemicals, etc.) that form the human anatomy and physiology. On a parallel level, the solar system is made of tiny planets orbiting the sun in a vast universe. The main imagery of this sculpture is that of a simplified androgynous figure, suspended in space which is comprised of many small spheres. Clusters of spheres are able to rotate independently around two vertical posts. The stainless steel posts are constructed in a way that implies a typical laboratory retort stand. When the clusters are at “home” position, a human figure can be visibly deciphered, but when scattered, the figure transforms into random molecular elements in space. The spheres are made of hollow cobalt blue blown glass, with white LED string lighting inside. The clusters of spheres rotate randomly when wind pushes against the corresponding screens. Cables with weights are attached to the mechanisms so they have a tendency to return to the home position. After dusk, electrical switches detect when they are in this position and those spheres are illuminated from within, providing a small celebration of light. If desired, the viewer can gently pull down the weights to help the clusters form a figure once again.