Slow Revolution

September 22nd, 2009

“Slow Revolution” is a kinetic sculpture by Jan Vormann. An electric motor is connect to 16 gears, the motor does 5700 RPM but the last cogwheel does only 0.0000003 RPM. This means that it will take one and a half years for that wheel to do a full revolution.

Slow Revolution by Jan Vormann

Slow Revolution by Jan Vormann

12 Responses to “Slow Revolution”

  1. pista Says:

    would love to see what would happen when you turn the “slow wheel”

  2. dihs Says:

    oh wow that made me cringe. maybe its ocd but i really wanted that last wheel to turn.

  3. Jan Vormann | Slow Revolution | Zenhysteria Says:

    [...] suis tombé ce matin sur une oeuvre signifiant une de mes convictions : les révolutions prennent du temps ! On [...]

  4. xpez Says:

    Is the audience on the internet so unaware of everything that they think this is something BRAND NEW AND ORIGINAL…

    to all the new art school kids that just graduated do a little bit of research on TIm Hawkinson.

    This is like discovering a brand new ” M O B I L E”…at the MOMA gift shop and thinking its friggin awesome..

  5. pieter | today and tomorrow Says:

    Who said it was a brand new and orgininal thing? Isn’t possible that 2 people have exactly the same idea but don’t know about each other?

  6. Slow Revolution | Spreeblick Says:

    [...] via [...]

  7. letterpreston Says:

    Not having seen this first, I would have guessed that all the gears would turn at the same speed. Interesting

  8. Marc Says:

    @pista, If you could turn the far left wheel the gearing would be reversed and the drive wheel would spin like mad. I suspect that it would be very difficult to turn the wheel on the left and even if you could, the bearings would probably crap out. The gearing is about 4.4:1 at each gear. Think of it as a 4:1 for easier math. So if you turned the left wheel one RPM, you turn the one to the right of it at 4, then at 16, 64, 256, 1024, 4096, 16384, 65536, 262144, 1M+ etc. So alittle more than half way through and you have something spinning at 1M+ rpms. Thats really really fast.

    Tim Hawkinson could have very well seen this from Arthur Ganson. Or the other way around.

    Personally, I like Ganson’s version more. I like seeing the energy disappear into the block that will effectively never move in the span of time i can conceive of.

  9. Machine with Concrete - today and tomorrow Says:

    [...] found the “Machine with Concrete” by Arthur Ganson in the comments of Slow Revolution, thanks Marc. It is actually a very similar piece, but Machine with Concrete is even more extreme. [...]

  10. Jan Vormann, slow revolution | you might like this Says:

    [...] via today and tomorrow [...]

  11. xpez Says:

    @ Marc. Tim Hawkinson made his piece with the gears in the early nineties.. Sure i believe in Jungs collective unconsious. It just seems to be an effect of the internet to see a post and think OMG this is so new!

  12. Josh Paterson Says:

    About moving the last wheel instead of the first:

    Think of how much work is done on the system to move that last gear one revolution in 1.5 years. Thats how much work would need to be performed if you tried to directly turn the last wheel 1 turn with all the other gears still attached. If hypothetically you could apply the needed force the stresses in the gears would be more than I think any material would be capable of handling and it would break.

    By my calculations comparing 5700rpm vs. 1rev/1.5years the fast wheel is turning about 4,493,880,000 times faster than the slow gear, which means that if it took you an hour to turn the slow wheel, the fast wheel would be turning at about 75 million rpm

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