Chiral Ring
Chiral Ring

Utah State Public Art Collection



7' x 30' diameter

Utah Valley University Po...


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View all works by: Ray King

Chiral Ring is a suspended sculpture of stainless steel and glass as the artist's response to the theory of chirality (the word comes from Greek for "handed" and refers to the left-right asymmetry found in nature.) The work is a geometric shape with an underlying concept of physics, chemistry and biology. Human hands are an example of chirality as well as the Toroidal Carbon Nanotubes of quantum science and engineering.

The sculpture combines several metaphors of chirality as found in physics and chemistry. The structure has two exterior toroidal paths that connect to 24 hexagons. the nodes of the ring connect in polygonal form - similar to modes of bonds in particle physics.

The atrium space where the work hangs, is a convergence of several levels and sources of light. Chiral Ring floats in the space, interacting with sunlight through the glass curtain wall as well as light monitors, visible from the bridge, ground floor, mezzanine and the exterior. At night the work is illuminated to create color reflections on the ceiling and large wood clad wall.

The skeletal structure is of 1" stainless steel tubes. Inside the rings are stainless steel cables with turnbuckles with technical connections that are tensioned to compress (strengthen) the structure. Attached to the cables are two sets of 1/4" thick faces of laminated glass with dichroic coating.

The two sets of glass face each other but are in a chiral relationship. All of the dichroic glass faces have the same coating but appear as different colors as the color shifts with the viewing angle. Looking straight through it will appear cyan, this shifts to magenta and then yellow as the view angle is increased. The reflective color also changes in relation to the viewing angle. The relective color (gold) is active when a lighter or brighter surface (sky or wall) is reflected like a mirror.