Tag Archives: Humayun

Of How the Zodiac Tent Came Into Being

Today’s progress on the zome for the Zodiac Tent, despite the relentless Welsh rain, has been attaching the first and second level struts together with that first connector.

Zome Connector and first level struts

Zome Connector and first level struts

struts for Zodiac Tent

Wales – wild, wet and beautiful

Now is a good time to introduce the story behind the Zodiac Tent, and how its present incarnation came to us…

Like all stories of power, the elements of it are threads in a multi-dimensional tapestry, and any starting point has many associated references. So, for this thread I will introduce us as canvas tent-makers and begin with the tent palaces, which for some time we had been dreaming of: grand nomadic structures, which stand as the heart of a tribal village.

Over the last few years, we have been involved in the making of a few.

Hoopoe yurt Palace, Andalucia, Spain

Hoopoe yurt Palace, Andalucia, Spain

Two-storey Yurt in the Ardeche, France

Two-storey Yurt in the Ardeche, France

Then, a couple of years ago in Israel, The Last Act on Earth, the transformational travelling show, was born.

Later, back in Hungary, we were looking at Mughul palace tents, in particularly, Humayun’s Zodiac Tent, which was a grand 16th century court tent comprising 12 trellis yurts in a circle for the 12 signs of the Zodiac, encompassed by a central structure for the celestial sphere. We then had an enquiry from a guy who wanted to make special tented accommodation for festivals, and in designing his camp and talking to him about the Zodiac Tent, an artist came up with this picture…..

The Oasis

The Oasis

Very soon afterwards, we were contacted by Iwan Brioc from Theatr Cynefin in Wales, with his proposal for an itinerant transformational theatre, with a travelling venue tent complex which looked like this…

Project X: proposed tent

Project X: proposed tent

This was an omen to us, as here was someone, seemingly unrelated to us, who seemed to hear a very similar vision about a travelling court tent, like the grand tents of the Moghuls. So then the structure evolved into this…

Zodiac tent with  zome as canopy

Zodiac tent with zome as canopy

…a story by itself, so we will touch on it later, but what is noteworthy is that as we moved on with this journey, we find more and more people who come to us and say, “I have heard this story” or “I have also been working on this for a while now”.  There are some meta scripts which are out there at large: we do not own them, we simply are helping them come true.

Zome Angels

Zome Connector

Zome connector

If you have read yesterday’s post, you may find this picture strangely familiar, this here is the first connector.

This is a multi level story, and so this connector is represented on more than one level, although it is noteworthy that this is the ground level connector, and we will be building up from here.

As this day has been hyped for quite a while now, coming back from town and after re-spraying the truck bonnet (another story), we knocked it ready just before sunset (hard to weld without the light, as we were doing it outside). This connector then is going to be our introductory point to this project and story, to the living myth.

On one level it is a box section 50mmx 50mm of 3mm mild steel, welded at an angle to another section of the same, acting as a sleeve connector for 4 wooden lengths that come together (they simply insert into it). These are wooden laminated ribs which, in turn connect to other steel connectors just like this one to form ………

Zodiac tent

The zodiac tent 3d

The Zodiac tent.

You can read the background of the original Zodiac Tent and the mythical prince who dreamed it up here…. http://www.lastactonearth.com/zodiac_tent.html and if you press on the gnomad (gnome+nomad) with the camel, you enter the next room where our modern version is revealed.

This tent is going to be the core of this project, and the building of it will, among other things, be the focus of this story, so this is the first layer connection, hope you can follow the idea that life has more than one layer of meaning.

IMG_0440

Zome Angles

Like John Maynard Keynes said about Isaac Newton that “he regarded the universe as a cryptogram set by the almighty………… By pure thought, by concentration of mind, the riddle, he believed, will be revealed to the initiate.”

Here is a picture showing the various angles and the layers of the zome.