Zero Gravity Koan, 2004

250 x 150 cm base diameter

Glass reinforced polyester, Perspex, motorised drive and fluorescent lights

Niccone Valley, Italy

In 2004 I decided to remake the Koans, which I had originally made in 1969 and exhibited at the Hanover Gallery in London.

The Hanover Gallery had sold 2 of the 3 large Koans to the Boissonas collection in France, where they had been seriously damaged in a fire. At the time, I was occupied with new works and didn’t have the means to remake them.

I made the new Koans larger and more aerodynamic than the first ones (see Space Displace Koan in Tate collection) but the arrangement and colour of the Perspex planes, appearing as oscillating lines of light, I kept largely the same. Zero Gravity Koan was first exhibited in the Umbrian town of Umbertide, where it featured on a base continuing its form at the centre of a roundabout connecting the old town to the new town. It remained for one year on loan to the town. In 2005, it returned to the UK to be exhibited in Liliane Lijn Selected Works 1959-1980 at the Mead Gallery, University of Warwick, April – June 2005 and subsequently at the Djanogly Gallery, University of Nottingham, June – August 2005. More recently it was exhibited at the Villa Fidelio, in Spello, Italy.

I am using glass-reinforced polyester to mold a truncated cone, which is then sawn into elliptical sections, into which fluorescent Perspex planes are laminated. The cone, rejoined and whole again, is lit from within and rotates at a constant speed causing the lines, resulting from the inserted elliptical planes, to oscillate, their motion describing the complex conical form.

In my work with cones, I use elliptical planes to divide the cone, analysing the complexity of the conical form. I am interested in the relationship between the luminous lines, which appear to change the space between them. Koans are about relating the parts to the whole.