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Zonal Harmonic Constellation 170,000; Zonal Harmonic Constellation 220,000 (work of art)

Artwork Info

born 1973-
Height, width, and depth of larger sculpture:
73.5 x 104 x 102.3 inches (187 x 264 x 260 centimeters)
Height, width, and depth of smaller sculpture:
34.6 x 56.3 x 46.5 inches (88 x 143 x 118 centimeters)


Purchased with funds from the North Carolina State Art Society (Robert F. Phifer Bequest)

Object Number

Key Ideas about this Work of Art

  • Zonal Harmonic Constellation is made up of two sphere-shaped sculptures. They are suspended from the lobby ceiling inside the entrance to the Museum’s West Building. 
  • The artist’s interest in arachnids/spiders has led to his studio participating in programs to help endangered species. His fascination with spider webs can be seen in his sculptures, which often feature strings and monofilaments that form webs between objects.
  • The artist combines art and engineering to create sculptures that are inspired by science. His works explore issues such as environmental sustainability, the solar system, and interspecies cohabitation (living creatures that exist together at the same time or in the same place).

Learn More

Artist Tomás Saraceno creates sculptural installations that combine art, science, and architecture. His work explores different aspects of nature and environmental sustainability. He also explores themes relating to outer space and constellations. Saraceno’s sculptures highlight the connections that exist between all living beings. 

Zonal Harmonic Constellation is made up of two sphere-shaped sculptures. They are made of carbon fiber, polyester rope, and monofilament and are suspended from the ceiling by wires. Saraceno was commissioned to create this sculpture for the NCMA. It is a site-specific work, which means that it was created to exist in a certain place. This sculpture is part of Saraceno’s ongoing body of work, Zonal Harmonics. The larger of the two spheres is the artist’s largest Zonal Harmonic sculpture to date.

Saraceno says he is inspired by nature and animals. He is known for his interest in spiders and their webs. He often uses strings and monofilaments to create webs between the objects in his sculptures. His love of science and spiders led him to create Arachnophilia, a non-profit, interdisciplinary spider/web research community. This resource aims to increase visibility and change people’s perceptions of spiders and webs. It also helps to protect endangered species.

Like the concrete rings of Gyre standing guard in the Museum Park, the Zonal Harmonic Constellation offers Museum visitors a portal to think differently, gesturing toward an overlapping of multidisciplinary zones of thought, media, and creative practice with one another, emphasizing collaboration and interconnectivity.

Tomás Saraceno

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  • Two spherical sculptures, one larger and one smaller, hang suspended from a ceiling by wires in front of a wall of windows. The sculptures are made up of thin wires connecting suspended metal rings and half-rings.

    Zonal Harmonic Constellation 170,000; Zonal Harmonic Constellation 220,000