Thursday, April 16, 2009

Theme Thursday-Earth (The Infinity Project)

Photographs are ® G. Deane Bardwell, Tommy Olof Elder, Emelia Fleck, Lewis Legbreaker, Deb Levin, Wendy Miner and Scott Lesure.

Infinity Project

Josh Simpson, contemporary glass blower and artist, uncovered a few handmade marbles outside his kitchen door in 1976. It was likely that they had been left behind by children of another era. Time had not dulled their colorful brightness; they looked as new as the day they were lost. He began thinking about the longevity of glass. Glass, composed of silica, one of the Earth's primary component's, is stable chemically. For thousands of years, it will remain unchanged. It is environmentally inert and therefore, green. He thought of all the invaluable pieces of museum quality glass that had been discovered around the Earth. Many of the items had spent hundreds of years underground before being unearthed by archaeologists.

Click photo to View Infinity Project

He began making beautiful, intricate, silica Planets which he started hiding more than 30 years ago. At that time, none of his work had been acquired by museums. In an effort to stake his claim in posterity, he hid Planets near his house. Later, he would take extras to leave behind when he traveled. After learning to fly, he air dropped Planets from the pilot's window of the plane in obscure locations. He left Planets in everyday locations. Other people began asking for the privilege of concealing them. Since 2000, over 1,700 participants have tucked Planets in locations around the Earth. Some of the Planets will lie undiscovered for eons. Others, will be found right away. The recipients of the find may well ponder what the Planet is and why it was left.

Photo: Deborah S. Taylor

It is Josh's hope that, far into the future, archaeologists will consider the message and purpose of these little orbs. What are they? How did they get there? He likes to imagine archaeologists puzzling over Infinity Project Planets just as they had the odd glass goblets found in ancient Mideastern sites.

Photo: Britney Whiting - Budapest,Hungary

What was the story of the goblets? Was their purpose connected to beauty, health and spirit? Or were they more practical like miniature liqueur vessels? It was a great mystery until the late 1970s when a glassblower was found, by a Corning Museum scientist, working over an ancient furnace in Herat, Afghanistan making the same shaped tiny goblet. Ultimately, it was learned that they were designed as water and seed holders for caged birds. The archaeologists were way off track.

Photo: Kelly Fellows

Many of the Planets will be found by people other than archaeologists. They will be found by people who may or may not be able to afford one of Mr. Simpson's pieces. They will be found by the educated and the uneducated alike. They will be found by artists as well as non-artists. Josh is intrigued by the idea of touching a completely new group of beings with his art glass. In his own fashion, he has found a way to bridge cultural and social ravines. He has done the impossible. He has created his own time machine capable of reaching hundreds and thousands of years into the future. He stepped into the future after finding the past.

Photo: Astronaut Cady Coleman with Russian Cosmonauts Alexander Misurkin and
Nikolai Tikonov with their Infinity Planet during Soyuz water survival training in the Black Sea.

Josh Simpson donates two Planets at least once a month: one to keep, one to hide on Earth. Inscribed only with the Infinity symbol, they are entrusted to people who apply.

Merely propose when, where and why you want to place a Planet. If selected, you will join a select group of individuals whose quest is to participate in this exciting and unique project. Your name, approximate location of your hidden Planet and (hopefully) your photo will be posted.

Zebulon Jakub Near the weather station at the summit of Mount Washington

I have my own idea of when, where and why I would like to conceal a Planet. How about you?

All photos courtesy of the gracious Josh Simpson. From the bottom, top and center of my green heart chakra, THANK YOU.


tony said...

I love the idea, but dropping out of a plane!!??? Bit dodgy if you were stood underneath at the time?You would end up seeing *stars*!!!!

Brian Miller said...

very cool. great find and thanks for sharing. fun to play out the idea of what we will leave behind and what the future will think. lol tony.

JGH said...

What a fantastic project for an artist - especially since works of art in other media won't hold up this way. Fun to imagine what people will think when they come upon them in a thousand years -- or more

Baino said...

Wow this is fantastic. I'd love one but have no idea where I'd place it perhaps in one of those Geothingies where people leave little objects and others find and trade them. Great post and really interesting take on leaving something behind.

Anonymous said...

Very interesting, indeed. Things are still being dug up that science cannot explain. I can imagine an archaeologist in 3 or 4 thousand years trying to figure out the mystery behind this...

Candie Bracci said...

Really interesting post Ronda.No I have no idea,but that project is really great.

Mrsupole said...

It would take me months to come up with somewhere and I had seen something about this project before and I gave up. Maybe just put it with all my stuff and let them discover it when the stuff is discovered a hundred years from now.

Great post. God bless.

The Clever Pup said...

I am so excited by this idea. I just LOVE it. I hope to find one someday.

I love back yard archeaolgy. I've found rings, 100 year old pennies, shards of china, 3 intact bottles from the 1800s.

I decorate a lot in my yard with those coloured glass pebbles. Inevitably they sink during the winter and some child 30, 40, 50 years hence will have the delight of uncovering 100s of these.

Leah said...

This is truly wonderful. I'm going to show this to my family and we will debate. Thank you so much for posting this!

Wings said...

Wow. I never heard of this before. So cool, and such a great thing to do, for now and for the future. Wonderful.

Going to check out his site right now, thank you! :)

Auntie, aka Dog Girl said...

what a clever way of doing today's TT.
my BF and I buring a time capsule in our backyard...newspaper clippings,a subway token, and old ticket stubs to a luther vandross concert.

Ronda Laveen said...

Tony: LMAO!!! Seeing *stars*...VERY funny.

Brian: I agree with you, it is fun look at what we leave behind and how it will be viewed in the future.

JGH: Yes, he worked with the perfect medium for this idea. It comes from the earth and he
is putting it back in a different form.

Baino: I have not heard of the Geothingies. I will check this out.

Subby: Yes, and in 3 to 4 thousand years, do you think they will figure out that they were created just to make someone wonder?

Candie: It is, and continues to be, an interesting project. Maybe you will come up with something yet.

Sherry: I think your idea of just putting it with your stuff and letting someone find it in the future is as good as any.

Clever Pup: I hope I find one someday too. I think it would be just as interesting to hear stories from those who have found them and what they did with them. Look how much joy you are planting for some to discover in the future.

Leah: I would love to hear what you and your family come up with for the project.

Wings: The more I think about this project, the more intricate and intriguing I find it to be. I is a wonderful way to touch the past, present and future.

Doggie Girl: The idea of putting a time capsule in the backyard is great. I will have to do one. Hmmm, what should I include. Maybe a bra. I think people of the future should know of these torture devices used in the past.

VE said...

I'd buy a succession of larger and larger safes. I'd place the marble in the smallest safe and then place that safe in the next largest and so on. Then...I'd bury the largest one really, really deep somewhere in New Jersey (because nobody would want to dig there for the next several million years) and I'd find a way for Geraldo Rivera's great,great (add 20 more greats here) grandson to open it in front of the world only to find an odd glass marble instead of incredible wealth...

ps - Great post!

Ronda Laveen said...

VE: I bow down before your greatness. (Genuflecting now). That is truly a great, great (add 20 more greats here) idea!. That would add an extra element to the wondering of that marble's purpose!

DineometerDeb said...

Well, I would like to conceal one on the beach because I will take any excuse I can to go to the beach. But, I would probably put it in my purse to transport it there, and then, knowing what my purse is usually like, it would never be able to find it. It would then be found be an employee of the Goodwill a few years later.

Interesting and creative idea for a project!

Dakota Bear said...

Good post!

This sounds like a fun thing to do. But at the same time it could be confusing to future archeologists. Than again the info is on the internet with pictures, so there should be no mystery.

Poetikat said...

A lot of work went into this post and I enjoyed it - learned a lot too. I like how you were able to connect the art glass to the earth. Of course it's true, but it's not the first thing you think about. Brava!


Thanks for visiting my blog; I'll be participating next week for sure.

Ronda Laveen said...

DineoDeb: I think that is as good of way as any for one to be found.

Dakota: The answer to the riddle would be easier than the archaeologists probably would think, huh?

Poetikat: Thanks and I'll hit you back next week for TT.

Dave King said...

Fascinating post - one of the most fascinating I have come across in a while.

Squirrel said...

Great Post -- and I agree with JGH's comment.

Liza said...

From an artist standpoint, it's so romantic. But from a practical joker's perspective, what a way to play with people's minds. Can you imagine what archeologists around the world might say when they realize that they have similar findings. "Man, these balls roll." Or "they were really popular back in the day. They must have been toy balls for the privileged and their children." Poor saps = )

Evening Light Writer said...

I am running late with Theme Thursday, I'm so very glad I have the day off! I like the idea of something lasting forever like words on a page. Putting gifts back into the earth, what a concept right? Ronda, where would you put yours? I would place mine somewhere on the Blue Ridge Parkway near my home. Lots of touristis pass through there but really the place feels like it doesn't belong to anyone.

Ronda Laveen said...

Dave: Thanks. Glad you dropped in.

Squirrel: Yes. It is fun to imagine what will be future thought on the purpose of these marbles.

Liza: You are too funny! I love your projection of what they might think these were for.

Mindy: Happy Friday off. I think I want to put mine up at Mt. Shasta, one of the 7 spiritual mountains of the world and believed to be home of the ancient Lemurian race. The Lemurian's broke off and contained remnants of the Atlantean's. But there are so many wonderful places to put them here. The caverns, the volcanoes, dams, lakes, forests, even leaving one in a very public place where I could watch it be found would be fun.

Megan said...

I know exactly where I would hide one. Nope, not telling.

Ronda, this is great. Thank you for drawing it to my attention. Sorry for the late attention to your post. I am catching up slowly but surely (a rolling marble gathers no moss)...

lettuce said...

i knew nothing about this - how wonderful!

Dot-Com said...

Sorry for only catching up on Thursday's Theme posts now, it's been a busy week. Fun to think about what we'll leave behind when we leave - if indeed we do! Will "they" sit there and guess what things are? Hmmm!

Colette Amelia said...

Thank you for this wonderful post! What a most excellent project! I think I should you think hiding one in my house amoungst my rock collection (that everybody ooohs and ahhhs over...especially kids)would cut the mustard?

Michael Rawluk said...

That is such a cool idea. The difficult part is trying to decide where to put it.

Ronda Laveen said...

Megan: I think secret placement helps keep the mystery.

Lettuce: It is a unique approach, isn't it?

Dot-Com: Yes, intriguing wonderment, huh?

Colette: I think that is a wonderful idea.

Michael: It takes some pondering to think of a good spot.

Reya Mellicker said...

Wow this is so cool! And it feels to me like another piece of this huge "neural" network our species is setting up all over the planet through blogging and twitter and Facebook and youtube. The planets seems crystal-like, focusing energy, providing points through which this network can connect.

Really cool, sister!!

Ronda Laveen said...

Reya: You are so right! It does feel like part of this neuronetwork that is forming. I never thought of the crystal properties of the planets until you pointed it out. Almost like a part of Sacred Geometry.

Not only is this network being formed by twitter, blogging, Facebook, and youtube, but many energy and light workers and masters are holding the thought form for the existence of this grid in place. It is very interesting the way this network is beginning to work.

Christina said...

OMG! I have a planet in my toolbox!
It's been there for decades - I took it a long time ago.
I think I can only pass it on once I'm gone - I just LIKE it so much! ;)

I am amazed.

Ronda Laveen said...

Christina: R U kidding me? You have a planet? That is amazing!! I'm glad you got to read this.