Penduloz - The 21st Century Drawing MachineThe classic harmonograph reimagined. Mesmerizing drawing machine uses gravity and physics to create hypnotic designs. Pledge Here
If you’ve ever explored the intersection of art and geometry, you’ve probably played around with Lissajous curves. You recognize them instantly.
These psychedelic spirals may give you 80s arcade vibes, but ambitious artists have been making them since the Victorian period — long before roller rinks or computer algorithms!
This is the Penduloz, a modern drawing machine modeled after the experimental harmonographs from the 1800s. The Penduloz renders hypnotic designs in infinite permutations — all powered by gravity and physics.
The Penduloz combines all the elements of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics) into a machine that playfully subverts electricity and the digital age.
The Penduloz is a dual elliptical harmonograph with several novel, patentable elements. It features no motors and combines kinetic energy, friction, and gravity to create dazzling original imagery.
The machine consists of a long pendulum with spherical disc weights. A second shorter free pendulum, known as the ‘deflector’, hangs from the bottom of the first.
We’ve built the Penduloz harmonograph with self-aligning gimbals and a specialized penholder and a centering clutch that centers effortlessly on the drawing paper. The spring penholder lets you easily change out colors and pens.
Unlike a kinetic sand ball sculpture device, the Penduloz draws patterns you can use to make unique personalized stationery, postcards, greeting cards, business cards, tee shirts, placements, or wall art. No designs are the same! The patterns the Penduloz creates mirror many structures and formations found in the natural world —like galaxies, planets, spiderwebs, mollusk shells, or the path of subatomic particles.
Create Original Drawings in Less Than a Minute
Kids thrive on interdisciplinary activities! Watch them grasp new connections between art, math, and tech – all while engaged in self-directed exploration.
For adults looking for the tranquility of a concentrated flow state, the Penduloz gives you problem-solving stimulation akin to crosswords or sudoku, combined with a relaxation effect like knitting or painting.
For further variety, draw on your iPad* with Apple Pencil* and print your creations for T-shirts, banners, business logos, posters — the possibilities are as limitless as the designs themselves.
The Penduloz compliments the sister arts by allowing your mind to deepen its perspectives. If your skills lean more musical or literary, or you specialize in a scientific field like chemistry or biology — we’re willing to bet you’ll find new applications and inspiration from working with the physical-visual innovations of the Penduloz.
Hugh Blackburn, a Professor of Mathematics at the University of Glasgow, is credited with inventing the harmonograph using pendulums with pen attachments.
By the end of the 19th century, harmonographs caught on with the art crowd and became a popular parlor entertainment, inspiring hundreds of articles on how to construct them. Many harmonographs were designed to fold up in a box the size of a violin case to “take to a friend’s house for the evening.”
If you are interested in the intriguing mathematics behind the harmonograph click here.
Today, we are currently the only company producing a harmonograph in any form. The Penduloz is available in two versions.
This harmonograph is very different from the older types of harmonograph as it is a dual system with a secondary weight below the platen that provides a chaotic mystical vector to the drawing. It is sometimes referred to as the driver or deflector.
Designed and built in California by D. A. Rorabaugh
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