Timeline 2

Charlie Hooker

Research output: Non-textual outputArtefact


TIMELINE 2 is a temporary public sculpture and was commissioned by the internationally-recognised Bjerknes Centre for Climate Research as a centre piece to their Bjerknes Days Climate Change Symposium, held at the VILVITE Science Centre, Bergen in 2007, and then reinstalled in a new building developed by the University of Bergen. The commission was organized in collaboration with Prof Eystein Janssen, awarded the Nobel Peace prize for his work on climate change in 2007, currently Director of the BCCR Norwegian Centre for Excellence. The physicists, paleoclimatologists and technical researchers who worked with Hooker to prepare the project are all researchers and educators with international standing. The installation was viewed by several hundred people during the symposium and thousands when re-installed in the Student reception Building. An interview with Hooker was also broadcast on Norwegian Radio. The work linked researchers from post-graduate students through to professors from the universities of Brighton, Reading, Exeter and Bergen. TIMELINE 2 is the second in a series of works that takes cosmic ray activity as its starting point. This invisible yet universal phenomenon involves the bombardment of the planet with a never-ending series of tiny radioactive particles, emitted from our sun and every sun. In these works, Hooker uses Geiger counters to detect the particles as they travel through each installation, and creates switching systems to trigger audio-visual activity in the work each time a ray strikes it. TIMELINE 2 is a work that links 11,000 years of climate data revealed in a Norwegian lacustrine mud core to the current activity of cosmic rays bombarding our planet. It uses the effect of these invisible radioactive particles to make Geiger counters trigger ‘live’ beats from the two drums situated at either end of the core each time a particle hits one of them. Revealing such ‘buried history’ contained within a mud core is of great importance to understanding climate change.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2008

Bibliographical note



  • Public Sculpture
  • BCCR
  • Climate Change
  • Vilvite
  • Symposium
  • palaeoclimatology
  • cosmic ray
  • Geiger Public Sculpture
  • Geiger counter
  • radioactive
  • audio-visual


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