MIT Art-Science Project Makes $2 Million Diamond DisappearSeptember 09, 19
(IDEX Online) - How do you make a $2 million diamond "disappear"? For artist Diemut Strebe, in collaboration with MIT scientist Brian Wardle, the answer is a patented nanotube technology (CNT).
Mixing science and art, a 16.78-carat natural yellow diamond from L.J.West was coated using a new procedure of generating carbon nanotubes (CNTs), which was recently measured to be the blackest black ever created. The coating, which absorbs more than 99.96 percent of light, made it appear as if the SI1, radiant shape diamond had completely vanished.
"Any object covered with this CNT material loses all its plasticity and appears entirely flat, abbreviated/reduced to a black silhouette. In outright contradiction to this we see that a diamond, while made of the very same element (carbon) performs the most intense reflection of light on earth. Because of the extremely high light absorptive qualities of the CNTs, any object, in this case a large diamond coated with CNT's, becomes a kind of black hole absent of shadows," explained Strebe.
Strebe's art-science collaboration explores material and immaterial value attached to objects and concepts in reference to luxury, society and to art.
"We are presenting the literal devaluation of a diamond, which is highly symbolic and of high economic value," said Strebe, who presented The Redemption of Vanity at the New York Stock Exchange.