Created with layers and layers of LEGO pieces, magic angle sculptures appear to be completely abstract forms at first glance, but with the help of a light and rotation, they reveal their complex design.

Inspired by his work with magic angle sample spinning, “a scientific technique that mechanically simulates a molecule tumbling through space,” artist and spectroscopist Dr. John V. Muntean has been creating these sculptures from wood, acrylic, alumide, and other materials for 30 years. The sculpture above was created for LEGO and Ogilvy & Mather Asia.

His artist statement:

As a scientist and artist, I am interested in the how perception influences our theory of the universe. … Every 120º of rotation, the amorphous shadows evolve into independent forms. Our scientific interpretation of nature often depends upon our point of view. Perspective matters.

More videos about sculptures, shadows, spinning, perception, including the Ambiguous Cylinder Illusion and Mars Loops the Loop – What is retrograde motion?

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