At the 2001 NASS Conference in Montreal, Canada, Fred Sawyer presented the Sawyer Dialing Prize to Robert Adzema, with the award given “in recognition of his demonstrations, in sculpture and in print, that with a sundial we can experience light as a tangible form and “time and place” as inseparable.” Fred presented Robert with the certificate of recognition and a beautiful trophy equatorial by Tony Moss. Robert will donate the Sawyer cash prize to a worthy cause.
Robert describes “my sundials are abstract sculptures that measure the apparent motion of the sun throughout the day, the seasons and even the year. These mostly large, public works are carefully laid out, accurate both mathematically and geometrically, cast or fabricated in bronze, steel or stone and permanently set for their exact location. They are about sunlight and shadow.”
For more of Adzema’s work, read about the Suffern Free Library Sundial in The Compendium [Vol. 8 No. 4] December 2001 or visit http://www.robertadzema.com/
Thirty Nine NASS members met in the beauty of the Canadian Rockies at the Banff Conference Center. Talks began with Roger Bailey explaining his approach to “Designing a Sundial from Scratch” using basic trigonometric formulas. Then Fred Sawyer described the 19th century French engineer Charles-Nicolas Peaucellier who published a type of dial using only straight lines. Among other presenters was Tom Kreyche with “Projections of the Sphere for Universal Astrolabes. The center of attention came when Paul Nibley presented a variety of sundials with alarms. Everyone was delighted to watch his noonday cannon remind us of the sun on the meridian. Also demonstrated was a butterfly sun alarm that spread its wings with a chime, powered by solar cells. Tony Moss, UK dialist, discussed his efforts toward working with stainless steel. Roger Bailey discussed astro-archeology from the Stone Age the the Mayans and the Renaissance. Later, Dr. Gordon Freeman, Albertan scholar, presented his research on the Majorville Medicine Wheel. These are only some of the fine papers presented.
At the 2000 NASS Conference in San Francisco, CA, Fred Sawyer announced the presentation of the first annual Sawyer Dialing Prize to Fer J. de Vries “in recognition of his many years of dedication to dialing, and in gratitude for his development of Zonwvlak and his always helpful encouragement and support of the global dialing community.”
Fer could not attend the conference, but he sent a letter of appreciation asking that the cash award be donated in his name to the University of California Regents for use as a one-time prize fund for U.C. Berkeley’s Architecture 140 course where students are required to make a sundial.
This conference had a historical bent: Conferee speakers received a replica of the “Fugio” cent, America’s first coin issued in 1787. The coin was designed by Benjamin Franklin and shows a sundial with the motto “Fugio” meaning “Time flies”. Len Breggren discussed the history of sundials to 200 BCE and the work of the Greek geometer Diocles, who described the earliest Greek sundial, a hemispherical mirror that indicated the hour of the day from burning a trace. Fred Sawyer continued the historical view, discussing the overlap of Dialing and Cartography. Other presentations discussed the Prime Vertical and construction of daylines. Bill Walton presented “Pinholes and Shadow Sharpening” and Bill Gottesman presented a method for measuring wall declination using a carpenter’s square. John Carmichael discussed how one might turn the McMath-Pierce Solar Telescope into a sundial; Saturday’s sundial tour started at the Kitt Peak National Observatory, home of the world’s largest collection of optical telescopes (in 2002).
In recognition of Frederick W. Sawyer’s effort as president of The North American Sundial Society, editor of NASS’s journal The Compendium, and for giving his time and talent to sundial design and the promotion of sundialing around the world, NASS commissioned Tony Moss to design and craft a sundial for Fred.
The horizontal dial was presented at the 2001 annual NASS conference. It has a gold-plated hand-pierced gnomon with his initials that is set on a phosphor bronze plate engraved for his home latitude.
Faced with the turmoil of September 11th, many NASS members were unable to attend the conference. André Bochard began by giving description of sundials in the Stewart Museum collection, visited by the conferees the following day. Fred Sawyer described the beginning of the Shadow Catcher series, a set of digital reproductions of historical dialing books. Then, a number of interesting sundials were described, including the Sunmaster universal ring dial, an update on digital sundials, and a new type of horizontal dial from Fred Sawyer. André Bochard gave the conferees information on the formation and operation of Commission des Cadrans Solaire de Québec, the society devoted to French Canadian sundialing. Bill Gottesman spoke about his “Mathematical Expedition to the North Pole”, illustrating the concepts by juggling a bowling ball. The sundial tour included the Steward Museum and outdoor equatorials seen on a sunny day at the Parc régional de Longueuil and the marina de Boucherville. See these dials and much more in the PDF download!
Ron Anthony, Carl Trost and Mark Gingrich organized the 2000 NASS conference in San Francisco. A wide variety of sundial papers were presented, including Carl Trost’s description of the 1913 opening of the Ingleside Terrace sundial with a 28-foot gnomon, Robert Kellogg’s description of the “Amazing Maize Maze” the largest “organic” sundial, and educational insights by Mac Oglesby and Paul Lapp who reminded the conferees that “Toves don’t do Trig”. Download the PDF to read about the other sundial talks and discover the Azimeter and Sawyer Equant dials are all about. The sundial tour included a visit to the Heliodon at the Energy Center of Pacific Gas & Electric Company, and a tour through San Francisco and Berkely to see a number of dials including the Entrada Court horizontal dial at Ingleside Terracethe large horizontal dial at Hunter’s Ridge and the Navigator’s Sundial on the back of a tortoise in Golden Gate Park, and the Sunstone Alignment stones at the Park and at Lawrence Hall of Science in Berkeley.
This year’s NASS conference was held in Hartford, CT with 50 attendees. There were many presenters from sculptor and sundial designer Robert Adzema to Mike Shaw, one of four attendees from the UK. There were many interesting dials on display, including Fritz Stumpges “Solar Flair” dial, Larry Bohlayer’s “Sun Vial, Bill Gottesman’s Spiral Sundial, Mac Oglesby’s shadow plane dial, Mayall’s Cube dial at CIGNA, Waugh’s pillar dial at University of Connecticut, and Judy Young’s “Sunwheel” stone alignment circle at University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Tom Kreyche presented a paper describing his computer program to update and expand NASS’s Dialist’s Companion software while Sara Schechner discussed the interrelation of sundials, time and Christianity, drawing upon many European cathedrals that served as giant meridian sundials. As with a number of previous conferences, it rained or was sunless for much of the Saturday sundial tour.
Sundials for Starters
- Article Count:
- Article Count:
Sawyer Dialing Prize
Fred Sawyer, in cooperation with the North American Sundial Society, established a continuing yearly award, the Sawyer Dialing Prize to be presented by NASS to an individual for accomplishments in or contributions to dialing and the dialing community.
- Article Count:
In these pages is the famous tub sundial created by Robert Terwilliger using his laser trigon to lay out hour lines on a very irregular surface to create a working sundial.
- Article Count:
Who are today's sundial artisans? Here are several bioghraphies of several artisans that show the unique combination of talents in art, engineering, and mathematics.
- Article Count:
This section is dedicated to Richard Schmoyer who invented the Sunquest sundial. Please visit http://sunquestsundial.org/ as well.
- Article Count: