For today’s “Question of the Day,” I thought that we would mix science with a bit of culture, with a bit of fine art, to be precise. Here, we have a fantastic rendition of of Martin Luther King jr. Can you tell what was used to compose this amazing piece of art?
Take a look at the image of the artwork that is posted below, then comment with your best guess.
[toggle title=”Click for answer”] If you guessed Rubik’s Cubes, then you are right!
Of course, we all remember the rubik’s cubes, which were a smash-hit in the 1980s. The puzzle was invented by Hungarian sculptor and professor of architecture Ernő Rubik. The puzzle consists of a small cube that is covered in different colors. All-in-all, there are six different color choices. In order to solve the puzzle, each side of the cube must have only one color on it.
Artist Pete Fecteau created this fantastic piece of art using the small toys. He spent 40 hours configuring this monumental mosaic of Martin Luther King Jr., and it is made entirely out of Rubik’s Cubes. The work is called Dream Big. And Fecteau was able to complete the piece with help from a computer generated, pixelated draft, which he used as his blueprint. To complete the design, Fecteau used some 4,240 Rubik’s Cubes. The final construction was nearly 19 by 10 feet and weighed about half a ton.
Ultimately, this creation is more than just a pretty piece of art; it is an education tool. Rubik’s cubes are great for helping students understand three dimensional shapes, transformations, and symmetry.
The puzzle is often advertised as having “billions” of different arrangements; however, because there are so many spots on the cube, and so many different colors, there are some 43 quintillion different permutations! If you want to know the math behind this figure: