NANO Mandala
© V. Vesna ;

Victoria Vesna

NANO Mandala ,
Co-workers & Funding
  • NanoMandala
    800 × 533
  • NANO Mandala
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  • NANO Mandala
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The Nanomandala is an installation by media artist Victoria Vesna, in collaboration with nanoscience pioneer James Gimzewski.

The installation consists of a video projected onto a disk of sand, 8 feet in diameter. Visitors can touch the sand as images are projected in evolving scale from the molecular structure of a single grain of sand - achieved my means of a scanning electron microscope (SEM)- to the recognizable image of the complete mandala, and then back again.

This coming together of art, science and technology is a modern interpretation of an ancient tradition that consecrates the planet and its inhabitants to bring about purification and healing. The sand mandala of Chakrasamvara seen in this installation was created by Tibetan Buddhist monks from the Gaden Lhopa Khangtsen Monastery in India, in conjunction with the "Circle of Bliss" exhibition on Nepalese and Tibetan Buddhist Art at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. This particular sand mandala had never before been made in the United States.

To complement the video, sound artist Anne Niemetz has developed a meditative soundscape derived from sounds recorded during the creative process of making the sand mandala.

Of the installation the artist says: Inspired by watching the nanoscientist at work, purposefully arranging atoms just as the monk laboriously creates sand images grain by grain, this work brings together the Eastern and Western minds through their shared process centered on patience. Both cultures use these bottom-up building practices to create a complex picture of the world from extremely different perspectives.

  • genres
    • nanoart
Technology & Material
Display Computer: PC minimum P4 processor 2.0 Ghz and 512Mb, running Windows 2000 or XP. Sound card required.
Projector: Minimum 1500 ANSI Lumens, XGA, short throw will be needed in most spaces (ceiling heights 10'- 15'). Currently using Canon LV-7215.
Camera: Any color surveillance camera with AES (auto-exposure) and more than 320 lines.
Installation Requirements / Space
Table: 8 foot diameter made out of wood, 8 inches depth for sand, 18 inches off the ground (speakers go under).
Mirror: For the projector. Size depends on the height of the ceiling. It can be a good quality plexiglass which is not as heavy as glass.
Sand: White
Installation Requirements / Space
A reflecting mirror (in order to make total distance from the projector larger) should be installed on the ceiling. The mirror is about 25" square, mounted at a calculated 55 degree angle, and is first-surface mirror like in AM Table above. The projector is mounted from the ceiling using a custom-built adjustable hanging mount. This installation uses a large AVI movie file that has to be transferred to an external PC drive. Software setup involves proper circular masking (to the edge of the table) of the projection. The movie file is at 1024 X 768 resolution, and the projector resolution should also be the same. You can start the Director application and move the image up, down and sideways using the arrow keys. The image can be made larger or smaller by zooming the projector, throw ratios allowing. Make sure to remove the keyboard after adjustments are made, and also check that the mouse cursor is not in the viewable area.
Exhibitions & Events