Butterfly Effect

Rick Brown and Laura Brown (American, 20th century)
Norwell, Massachusetts
On loan from the artists

The Butterfly Effect sculpture consists of many concrete spheres and beams that represent a constantly changing composition. Installed on the museum grounds, the arrangement can be altered creating a dynamic relationship between the object, the site and the viewer. Based on meteorologist Edward Lorenz’s (1917-2008) chaos theory,” Butterfly Effect describes how a very small change in initial conditions can create a significantly different outcome or weather pattern. The concept has since been applied outside of meteorology to situations where a small change can cause greater consequence.

Rick and Laura Brown met in art school at the University of Georgia in 1970. They have collaborated on large-scale, site-specific installations, with each new sculptural work presenting a new set of challenges. The two artists are former faculty members at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston.