From Wired comes this rather odd interview with conceptual artist Jonathon Keats, who advocates turning the nuclear waste dump at Yucca Mountain into a universe nursery.

Keats has already built a $20 “do-it-yourself universe creation kit” (pictured above). The Yucca Mountain project would simply scale it up. What exactly this would look like is a little unclear, since by Keats’ own account the mini-univernursery is not terribly exciting to watch:

From the standpoint of being in the universe, making a new universe is very mundane. If you could stand outside it and see the universes cleave, I’m sure it would be very spectacular. But you’re seeing nothing in terms of the crystal glowing. That’s important to me: I didn’t want it to seem like every time you get a new universe, it’s Christmas. I wanted to fit it into the everyday humdrum nature of universal creation, to bring it down to a level where we recognize that creativity is what we do naturally, that it’s always in everything.

You can read more about Keats’ plan at Wired. Keats’ new show, “Universes Unlimited,” opened today at the Modernism Gallery in San Francisco.


  1. #1 llewelly
    November 21, 2008

    It’s almost as if Keats is trying to make fun of the multiple universes model.

    It’s been argued the multiple universes view is just a rhetorical trick, as it results in the same equations and same predictions as the Copenhagen model. That is – it does not appear to predict that said multiple universes can actually be detected.

  2. #2 NoAstronomer
    November 24, 2008

    I sincerely hope he’s trying to make fun of the multiple universes model, because otherwise he’s a complete twit.

    I’ve got this fluorescent light bulb above my head right now that’s making thousands of universes a second.

  3. #3 Jessica Palmer
    November 24, 2008

    I don’t think he’s exactly “making fun of” the multiple universes model, so much as putting it in context of daily activities, in order to push the implications to the limit of absurdity. (Artists do like to point out absurdity).

    The problem here is that I don’t think the project’s basis in physics is transparent to the average person – at least as I see it online. Perhaps the exhibit is more explicit about multiple universes, or perhaps he’s fine with only those who’ve had college physics “getting” it. I’m not sure.

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