Saans : eyes of the skin

In homage to the Sheesh Mahals (palaces of mirrors) of South Asia, this wall of shattered glass mirror acknowledges the presence of its viewers, by moving subtly with its own inhaling and exhaling breath. Because they are made of blown glass, each shard is slightly curved, creating thousands of convex mirrors that miniaturize the viewer’s reflection.The viewer almost disappears when standing still in front of the piece, while the curved mirrors amplify every small movement to create a cascading wave. Over time, the silicone skin will age, just like the original buildings did, and small pieces of mirror will fall away. The 35th Rakow Commission at Corning Museum of Glass.
Year: 2020-2022
Dimensions: 6 ft x 4 ft x 1 ft
Media: Blown, mirrored, and cracked glass: silicone, steel; Arduino sensors; electronics; wood
Front view featuring a reflective glass skin that breathes in the presence of a viewer, while miniaturizing and multiplying their self-image into a million repetitions across its surface. Photo Credit : Brad Patoka

Watch the subtle breathing behavior of Saans, in normal and fast speeds. Credit : Brad Patoka
Front view featuring mirrored glass as an elastic skin. Back view featuring woodburnt patterns that articulate the skeletal structure living inside the artwork’s body. Photo Credit : Brad Patoka
A peek inside the artwork shows its skeleton, organs and nerves. Photo Credit : Brad Patoka

Video documentary about the making of this artwork. Published by Corning Museum of Glass, 2022