Art infused with Science

Flow Instability

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Flow instability, 2013, Acrylic on stretched canvas,    30 h x 36 w inches on 1.5 inch supports,   Contact the artist


flow instability


An exploration of the fluid, gel, and paste properties of acrylics and acrylic media. The transparency of acrylic media, combined with a wide variety of viscoelastic properties allows flow phenomena to be frozen in and captured as part of a painting. In “Flow Instabilities” clear tar gel (Golden) was rough mixed with heavy bodied acrylic color, and then poured onto the canvas in linear patterns. The tar gel tends to form elongated strands as it flows, but strand formation is slow. By moving the container at different rates relative to the strand formation, the flow can be destabilized and broken. Destabilization and flow breaking cause periodic cellular patterns of paint within the clear film when it dries. Curious? Look up flow instability, periodic doubling, bifurcation.

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4 responses

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