I called this project 'You can touch this' to encourage people to touch the pieces on display. The fragile looks of my work easily deceives, and tactile exploration offers another dimension to appreciate tensegrity sculptures.
Tensegrity is composed of 'tensional' and 'integrity', describing a structure that depends on the tension elements for their shape, and not on the compression elements like eg in a normal house. The links in the sidebar lead you to more in-depth information about tensegrity, to keep things simple I want to quote the most poetic definition I heard: A tensegrity maintains its shape with 'islands of compression floating in a sea of tension'.
The sea of tension consists of strings. These connect the struts which don't touch - islands of compression. Depending on the amount of tension of a model surprising things can happen. Icosahedra and octahedra build with elastic string can be squished down and bounce back, composite models start moving within themselves by slight touch.
I explored the Platonic Solids as tensegrities, before I started combining shapes to more complex structures. I hope my Model 456 hasn't been swept away by the Queensland floods - I haven't managed to rebuild this tetrahedron build of icosahedra.
Besides enjoying building tensegrity sculptures I use them also to explain the structure of human anatomy in my profession as Alexander Technique teacher. I like spending my time at the market explaining and demonstrating tensegrity in movement, without any obligation to depart from your money. If I manage to infect you with my personal fascination with tensegrity and you want to get some, you will be spoiled with choice.
The most 'interactive' models only cost $20, and can easily be carried home. If you fancy a bigger model (and live in the Melbourne are), I can deliver the sculpture to your home, in case you don't need to worry about the transport. If you can't make it to the market, want to have one of the sculptures or find out more, contact me via Big Cartel.