This is artist Neil Mendoza’s ‘The Fragility Of Complexity’, a kinetic sculpture that consists of a series of rotating hammers that just barely miss breaking light bulbs as the the circle around their axis, the light bulbs swinging perfectly in between the hammer’s head and grip as they pass. Per Neil:
The world today is built upon multiple layers of complex interconnected systems. As time goes by, the illusion of the stability and sustainability of these systems is starting to fade away. This kinetic sculpture composed of hammers and light bulbs invites the viewer to contemplate this delicate balance of complex fragility. Light, glass and metal perform a ritual of periodic motion, carefully choreographed to avoid each other as long as each element of the system continues to function as intended.
Wait, what? I thought it was a design for a platforming video game level. That is too deep for me. “A kiddie pool is too deep for you.” Fact. Neil says that only a single lightbulb was broken during the sculpture’s design and construction. Now that is impressive. For reference, if I’d tried building this I would have broken all the light bulbs, causing a worldwide light bulb shortage and the sculpture still wouldn’t work.