top of page

Mission Statement

BC Gnomonics is based upon three ideals.

The first is a dedication to and appreciation for instruments of horary history. The site strives to deliver hands-on practical demonstrations for each of these instruments, highlighting their utility and range of function in an accessible manner.

BC Gnomonics aims to present these instruments not just as historical curiosities valuable for their status as precursors to modern timekeepers, but as valuable technologies in their own right.

Instruments like sundials function just as well today as they did centuries ago, the only complications arising from the fact that societal conventions have changed around them. With the proper allowances made for these modern conventions (such as mean solar time), a properly made sundial can be used with accuracy so long as the sun shines.

This latter point leads into the second pillar of BC Gnomonics, that being an increased natural awareness. In our modern world, the concept of time has been so thoroughly obscured that we no longer associate noon with the peaking of the sun, but with the number 12. In this vein, the very essence of time has been decoupled from the movements of the celestial sphere and reassigned to the digital display.

 

The simple act of using and manipulating a sundial can bring the user into a closer awareness with the natural sphere and the movements that provide the basis for the dial's function. Not only this, but this understanding also serves to unobscure the basis of time, rendering the operator keenly aware of the dissonance between modern convention and the sun.

The third goal of BC Gnomonics is to highlight the work of the few holdout artisans who continue to produce practical instruments. Amid the decorative astrolabes and sundials constructed without thought to latitude, there exist individuals dedicated to accuracy and the preservation of knowledge.

 

The many nonfunctional garden dials of the world delegitimize sundials in the public eye, veiling the sophistication of these instruments of history. The intricacy of movement and expansive utility of such instruments would be quickly buried by oversimplified contemporary representation if not for standout individuals such as Vsevolod Buravchenko of Master Terebrus, Adrian Cozzani of Polvere di Tempo, the Kala family of Kala Sundial, and Norman Greene.

BC Gnomonics features a number of instruments from these skilled makers, and wholeheartedly endorses their workshops.

Master Terebrus

Polvere di Tempo

Kala Pocket Sundial

Helios Sundials

Norman Greene's astrolabes

bottom of page