Axis | 2017 | steel, plastic, telescope stand | 200 x 200 x 200 cm

The coordinate system we commonly use today is called the Cartesian system, named after the French mathematician and philosopher René Descartes, who developed this system in the 17th century. Legend has it that Descartes, who liked to stay in bed until late, was watching a fly moving through space from his bed. He wondered how to best describe the fly's location and decided that one of the corners of the ceiling could be used as a reference point: x, y, z = (0,0,0). ‘Axis’ is Rick van Meel’s attempt to describe his own location and orientation in space. The coordinate system sits on top of a telescope mount driven by a clock motor that counteracts the rotation of the earth, resulting in a ‘stationary’ orientation of coordinates. Hereby showing the relativistic nature of one’s physical position in space.