Lux Obscura is an installation produced in collaboration with Rosie Reed Gold during my Leverhulme Funded residency at Durham University, hosted by Ushaw College. Rosie and I share a passion for light and reflection from a material, scientific and philosophical perspective, and the distortions that lie therein.
We allowed ourselves a single week to respond to one of the 13 chapels within the building, and chose the Mortuary Chapel as our blank canvass, allowing the architectural features to inform the structure of the piece.
The asymmetric fabric panels provide the structure of the work, drawing the eye to key architectural features. Two projections are cast onto the panels creating layers of distorted imagery that are constantly talking to each other. Each of these projections are videos of light experiments carried out just days before using our bank of optical toys and tricks, recording in turns to capture a moment of interest.
A reflective panel on the floor captures the light and kicks chaotic aurora-like effects onto the panels above.
Lux Obscura (shadowy light) underlines the duality of light and dark through the interplay of the two ‘light experiment’ projections that are in constant dialogue. This beguiling contradiction is emphasised by the organic, aurora-like effects that counterpoint the imposed order of its structure.
Conversations during that week crystalised our draw to light in a scientific and philosophical context. While I am focused on both the medieval and modern cosmological models, Rosie is drawn to the enlightenment and notes her non-linear approach to conceptualising time. The complimentary contrast that exists in Lux Obscura highlights one of the key concepts in my work during the residency, perception and the act of observation. By Rosie and I coming together we have played with a simple but powerful idea: the same but different.