XTX’s founder, Alex Gerko, is a mathematician with a passion for scientific and mathematical art and design. His team are known for their inherently inquisitive minds – always looking to understand the world and the hidden mathematics behind it. This became the core inspiration for the series of works we created across their London HQ, celebrating the complex and intelligent nature of the XTX world.
The Hoberman chandelier, a piece tailored to catch the eye of the curious minds that occupy the building, uses kinetics to bring a mathematical volume to life. This geometric structure, crafted from aluminium and built with 576 copper plated screws and 1728 nylon washers, expands and contracts in a soft breathing motion and will only be viewed in its full cycle by guests who pause to wait in the reception area.
The Liquidity Staircase piece plays on the words of XTX’s mission statement: ‘provide consistent liquidity, helping market participants throughout the world obtain the best prices in the various assets classes we cover, regardless of changing market conditions’. The idea of liquidity inspired us to create a staircase which uses the illusion of water elegantly falling through its centre, with the surrounding walls and ceiling becoming part of this installation – we played with 75 metres of copper pipe to emphasise the appearance of a liquid system running through the foundations of the building.
Sitting within our pentagonal wall installation, made from 4,000 pentagonal tiles and 2,886,764mm of engraving, the clock is another expression of a play on liquidity. Each circle represents an abstracted stream of water, which in turn represents the hours, minutes and seconds, making this a functional lighting installation. Mathematicians have researched pentagonal tiles and the patterns created from their tessellation since 1918, and in 2017 Michaël Rao claimed to have found proof that there are in fact no more than 15 monohedral convex pentagonal tile configurations. It is this newly discovered 15th configuration that we have depicted here within the tiling of the wall.