In creating his senior thesis exhibition, art student Yasutoki Kariya turned for inspiration to Newton’s Cradle – the iconic desktop toy that demonstrates Newton’s third law of motion. Originally created by the actor Simon Prebble back in 1967, Newton’s Cradle succeeded in visualizing momentum – the law that states that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
“Asobi” was Kariya’s bright idea. Meaning “play,” the installation is comprised of 11 computer-programmed incandescent light bulbs hung from strings. They playfully re-enact Newton’s Cradle – or more aptly, Edison’s Cradle – visualizing the transfer of kinetic energy, along with a very satisfying click-clack. Mesmerizing.
[Update] A redditor has created a hypnotic and calming animated gif of “Edison’s Cradle.” Awesome.