Beautiful video combines art and magnetism

Filmmaker Kim Pimmel combined ferrofluids, a magnet, soap bubbles, and dye to create this mesmerizing short video. Science + art = awesomesauce.

Video Link

Thanks, Brian Thomas!


  1. I got the same feeling from this that I get whenever I read the Bungalow House by Thomas Ligotti. As fascinating and beautiful as this was, I have to go look at kittens now.

    And this leads to the question – Superparamagnets, how do they work?

  2. Shawn, this beautiful video was a demonstration of:
    • fractal mathematics, (specifically brownian motion,),
    • fluid dynamics, (dispersion around and between the soap bubble interfaces,)
    • dispersion of immiscible fluids (red, black and clear/white water based soap bubbles in a 3D matrix, suspended in air,)
    set to a kick-ass tune.

    Now do you understand?

    Not only could I appreciate the video as “frickin’ awesome,” but I understood the reality behind it as “frickin’ awesome.”

    1. This is a great answer.  Does msb stand for my spiffy brain by any chance?

      I can’t wait to see what Kim does for Compressed 03 (please let there be a 03).  Light Drive was pretty awesome too, though arguably less unique.

      1. MSB stands for Multiple Sclerosis Blog. I had (have since its still downloadable) a podcast about the disease which disabled me.

        I’d change “spiffy” to “scarred”..

  3. Very cool.  Ferrofluids have fascinated me for years.   It is so precise, as if it were animated using Flash.

    1. This doesn’t take anything away from it, but the “precision” comes from the fact that the video is really a composition made from still frames. (That’s not apparent from the video, but they mention it in the comments at the linked page.) So you’re not seeing this in anything like real, linear time. I’m guessing that if you watched this happen with your own eyeballs, the fluid would smoothly accelerate toward the magnet in the usual quick way. 

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