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Chrysler Building Reflection

Artwork, Vol 6: Iss 2

Chrysler Building Reflection

If you are into the International Style (IS) of architecture, materials science of glass, and geometric optics, you hit the trifecta in New York City on a daily basis. It is the home of such classics of IS such as Lever House and the Seagram building, but less famous structures put out as well for the observant pedestrian. Modern materials used in IS include glass curtain walls providing large, unadorned reflective surfaces that are heat tempered to increase strength and promote safer breakage patterns. Thermal tempering can induce deviations from flatness in the glass, known as warps, bows, and local and roller wave distortions. Depending on the surrounding structures reflected from the glass, which in the above image is the iconic Art Deco Chrysler building, an infinite number of phantasmagoric images appear, one continuously morphing into another with slight shifts in gaze. It is interesting to this fan of distorted reflections that these deviations from flatness are typically discussed as defects in the construction materials literature, while actually not-to-be missed opportunities to create modern art images, images that underscore the core message of photography: stop, or at least slow down, and contemplate our amazing world.

Art Description:

Taken with hand-held Nikon N80, AF Zoom Nikkor 24-85mm, f/2.8-4D IF and Kodak Portra film. Aperture and exposure duration unrecorded. No photo-editing done


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