The Midsummer Chronophage.
John C Taylor’s Corpus Chronophage—the extraordinary mechanical clock surmounted by a time-devouring monster—was featured here following news of its installation at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, in 2008. Two years later its creator is ready to unveil a new clock which he calls The Midsummer Chronophage.
The Midsummer Chronophage pays homage to the 18th century clockmaker John Harrison, inventor of the marine chronometer and the ‘grasshopper’ escapement, a low-friction mechanism for converting pendulum motion into rotational motion. The Midsummer Chronophage takes the grasshopper escapement out of the clock and presents it on the outside as a sculpture. The mythical creature is also the world’s largest grasshopper escapement.
The face of The Midsummer Chronophage is a 24 carat gold-plated steel disc almost 1.5M in diameter, polished to resemble a pond of liquid metal with ripples that allude to the Big Bang. It was created by a series of underwater explosions.
The Midsummer Chronophage has no hands or numbers but displays time by aligning slits in discs behind the clock face back lit with blue LEDS; these slits are arranged in three concentric rings displaying hours, minutes and seconds.