Picture of a Black Bowl


Picture of a Black Bowl – Andrew Harmez

“Picture of a Black Bowl” explores the general theory of relativity and the ability of mass to warp space-time among other relativistic effects that occur near a black hole. More specifically, this piece explores these topics with respect to a black hole and was inspired by the recent photo of a black hole taken by EHT (Event Horizon Telescope).I chose ceramics as the medium for this piece since clay’s immense malleability is able to reflect the warping and curvature of space-time. Furthermore, the rotation of the wheel reminded me a lot about the formation of stars and black holes and it felt organic for my piece which reflects those objects to also be born out of angular momentum. In addition, I felt the ability to imprint on clay made it easy to impose one’s vision on a piece in a similar way that it is easy for scientist to impose their ideas on a phenomena or theory. In order to reflect the nature of relativity where events and objects can appear differently depending on their location relative to one I felt it was necessary to select another medium to complement the ceramics. For this I selected steel wool photography since spinning the steel wool at different angles allows me to portray the many different ways the accretion disk of a black hole can appear depending on what angle we are viewing it from. In addition, the sparks released by the flaming steel wool are very reminiscent of the accretion disk while the contrast between these sparks and the center of the photo reminded me a lot of the event horizon shadow.