Naked singularity

pen, watercolour collage original SOLD
available as: print, card
Painted as part of the Creative Reactions project, in which artists have been paired with the scientists presenting their work at the international Pint of Science festival.

My scientists were Markus Kunesch and Saran Tunyasuvunakool from the Department of Applied Maths & Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge. They are researching five dimensional black holes.

I chose to collaborate with theoretical physicists because, although I hated physics at school, my family are physicists and mathematicians. Although physics is still definitely not my thing, I’ve come to love seeing how it excites people. I love the animated body language, the intensity of the discussions.

Their working environment is a pared down, stark space. There isn’t art on the walls, and the shelves are bare. Functionality rules, even down to where to hang your umbrella. The vibrancy is instead concentrated in the collective brain. I’ve collaged my drawings from my visit.

They’re simulating something so fundamental – how the universe itself hangs together. I asked Markus and Saran to draw their research and I’ve included the heart of this in the piece. If a singularity can occur outside a black hole, the universe is not as we know it. The complex and intricate coding to do this is the fabric of their work, and it surrounds them, even at the coffee break, which is where I think the magic really happens.