The Sculpture Formerly Known as Swirly

George W. Hart

The Sculpture Formerly Known as Swirly is a table-top piece, 8 inches in diameter.
It is made from 3 mm thick laser-cut Baltic birch plywood, stained turquoise.
There are thirty identical planar components, each laying in its own plane.
It can be lifted off this base, which has five-fold symmetry.

You may have to study it for a while to see that each part is a flat shape that looks like this.
I like to visualize it botanically---like a curved stem with two leaves branching off.

To better understand it, watch this animation of it rotating.
The stems join end-to-end to make six large regular pentagons.
These are kept in relative position by the leaf connections.

Here's how it looks if you focus on a five-fold axis and its surrounding swirl.
Near the outside, you can see one of the large pentagons of stems edge-on.

This is a test-fit of the parts, after beveling all the mating edges to the proper dihedral angles.
Note the twenty triangular openings on 3-fold axes of symmetry, like at the center of this image. 
These tiny clothes pins with modified tips held everything together while the glue was drying.

I won't try to explain the name: The Sculpture Formerly Known as Swirly.
If all goes well, this will be a model for a larger sculpture of similar design.

Copyright 2017, George W. Hart