Art from light

I spent the past weekend in Madison, Wisconsin, at the Biennial Neon & Light Exhibition, which is a national invitational exhibition of artists using light as an art medium (see how cleverly I copied that from the official poster). The boyfriend, aka JiMao, teaches neon art and lighting design at Chicago’s School of the Art Institute and has been a part of this exhibition for many years. It features both professional and student work, and this is the third time I’ve gone along for the ride to help set up his students’ projects. The event is coordinated by the head of the glass art department at the University of Wisconsin, who is retiring this year. That means the future of the event is unclear. So this may be the last time we’ll be able to go crazy with light art in a large dirt-floored building normally used for agricultural shows! I’ll try to keep the commentary to a minimum, but in a few cases it’s necessary in order to understand a particular art piece. Enjoy!

poster

This sculpture made entirely of paper, lit from within.

This sculpture made entirely of paper, lit from within.

Looks amazingly like the sun's corona--it's an animated neon circle tube.

Looks amazingly like the sun’s corona–it’s an animated neon circle tube.

Created with blacklight.

Created with blacklight.

box bubbles

Neon inside the center ball, then candles lit from hand crafted glass holders. I like how the bottom flames burn upward!

Neon inside the center ball, then candles lit from hand crafted glass holders. I like how the bottom flames burn upward!

The current for the lamps passes through the wet clay. As the clay dries, the lamps dim and flicker. The one on the right isn't dry enough yet to make it obvious.

The current for the lamps passes through the wet clay. As the clay dries, the lamps dim and flicker. The one on the right isn’t dry enough yet to make it obvious.

green-scales

Looking down a structure designed like a ship's hatch.

Looking down a structure designed like a ship’s hatch.

If you look for it, you can see my reflection as I took the photo. Nice depth to this piece which was only about 6" thick in reality.

If you look for it, you can see my reflection as I took the photo. Nice depth to this piece which was only about 6″ thick in reality.

tower-lit

3-D sculpture from a gauze-like material.

3-D sculpture from a gauze-like material.

The boyfriend's collaborative (JimaoC4) cracked windshield sculpture. The next 3 photos show the words "throw away and". Rest is up to your imagination.

The boyfriend’s collaborative (JimaoC4) cracked windshield sculpture. The next 3 photos show the words “throw away and”. Rest is up to your imagination.

windshield2 windshield3 windshield4P.S.–I also took advantage of the fact that the Midwest Horse Fair was in full swing only a couple of miles away. Spent a few hours there and walked a few miles. Met Padré, the champion Mustang stallion I wrote about and did two portraits of a while back. Also caught up with the folks at Sons of the Wind Farm, where I spent a week at “dressage boot camp” in 2011. One way or another, just have to mix the horses with the art!

About Alli Farkas

Equine and landscape artist specializing in rural Americana
This entry was posted in art, dressage, light, neon, Padré and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Art from light

  1. munchow says:

    That looks like some amazing art made with and of light. Must have been a great experience.

    Like

    • Alli Farkas says:

      Maybe the best part was the camaraderie of setting everything up. You get to see how others put their pieces together, talk to them, offer a helping hand if needed, and engage in this big group experience. After spending all day watching things get assembled, you wait for dark and marvel at the light!

      Like

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