Daniel De Wit looks on as Tom Schulz begins to install one of the hour discs around the human sundial at Founders Park on Saturday afternoon. (Photos by Max Hrenda/Johnson City Press)
On Friday, while many were grilling out with their families to celebrate July 4, artists Tom Schulz and Daniel De Wit were installing a piece of interactive art near the entrance to Founders Park — a human sundial.
Unlike a traditional sundial, which uses a fixed object, or gnomon, to cast the shadow, a human, or analemmatic, sundial requires that a person serve as the gnomon. By using the Cartesian coordinate system based on Johnson City’s unique longitude and latitude, Schulz and De Wit’s sundial will allow passersby to be able to stand in the center of the sundial and be able to tell the time by looking at their own shadow.
The sundial itself — which was funded and commissioned by Tupelo Honey Cafe — is 1½-inch cast concrete with a mosaic pattern made from recycled pieces of glass, which Schulz and De Wit said was done to create an iridescent effect in the sunlight.