Saturday, June 14, 2014

DNA chain

After finishing the black and silver collars for Oxide, and before starting on the equally ambitious Dia de los Muertos piece I’m working on now, I thought I’d try something a littler simpler. So I looked over my rings and decided on a fairly fast, large-scale DNA chain.

This is my fourth of this weave. I did one this spring before Jazzfest. My first was a couple af years ago, in lavender and green. I sold it; I can’t recall if it was at Oxide or at a later show.

Then I made an enormous one with my nephew Tom. 8-gauge copper ground wire wrapped around a big dowel and cut with a hacksaw. He and I annealed each big link by holding it with pliers in the gas stove flame.

This current one is intermediate in scale - a ladder of 16-gauge 1/4” links in green, held in a twist by 20-gauge 1/8” pairs of black links. You can pre-close all the small rings. hang two on a large and close it.  Then hang two more little ones on the next large, insert it through one of the previous smalls from the inside toward the outside, through the large, and then the other small. 
That last step can either be easy or an infernal pain if the little one keeps flopping over the wrong direction. Anyway I had the 24” endless loop ready to wear to the Gallery Night last Saturday.

The small links could be of four different colors, in pairs to represent actual DNA bases coding for a real protein. I have the sequence for insulin, which is a useful length. I will have to learn the codon code, which I have forgotten, if I ever knew it. And settle on a color scheme. But I think the people who get the silver tryptophan pendants on Etsy ought to like them.


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