Double Marble Scope
Many artists tend to fall into kaleidoscope making in an unexpected manner. Each artist was involved with different and varied mediums prior to making kaleidoscopes. I jokingly comment …no one ever said, 'when I grow up, I want to make kaleidoscopes.' Truth be told, this statement is what makes kaleidoscope collecting so exciting. Each artist comes to the kaleidoscope arena with their own background - be it in wood, metal, glass, paper, clay or whatever their expertise may be. Thus the varied expressions of kaleidoscopes we so enjoy. It is very exciting.
Stan Griffith is a perfect example of this. Having worked as a professional welder for many years, ill health forced an early retirement. Out of boredom, he began working with glass. He adapted his welding techniques to solder and soon had created sophisticated stained glass works. He stumbled on the idea of kaleidoscopes and the rest as they say is history.
Like most kaleidoscope artists, Stan had no prior knowledge of kaleidoscope symmetry. By trial and error, Stan realized key elements to creating kaleidoscopic optical illusions. By angling the ends of the mirrors (to create a parallelogram) Stan instinctively forces you to look into the apex of the angle formed between the two mirrors where symmetry can be found.
Additionally, Stan placed two handmade marbles by Robert Lichtman at the end of the mirror system. If you rotate them independent of each other, unique effects can be found. The top marble is viewed in the center of the illusion, whereby the bottom marble is viewed on the perimeter of the illusion. Try moving one at a time then both together in the same and then opposite directions.
Clearly, the glass and solder techniques have created a sculpture of stunning design. Lichtman rods accent the white iridescent and opaque black glass.
The Double Marble scope measures 10 inches wide by 4½ inches tall by 1¾ inches deep. Made in 1989. $1800.
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