Artist Chris Wood works with colored glass to create colorful, prism-like mazes and mandalas of light installed vertically on walls. Her most common material is dichroic (meaning ‘two color’) glass, a material invented by NASA in the 1950s that has a special optical coating meant to reflect certain wavelengths of light while letting others through. At some angles the glass appears completely reflective, somewhat like a mirror of gold. Wood has constructed a number of different glass, mirror, and other light installations which have been carefully documented on her website. (via My Modern Met)
This slick commercial for Japanese high-speed optical internet service au Hikari has a pretty novel take on the Rube Goldberg Machine. Each sequence in the device is powered (or otherwise set in motion) by a single beam of light sent through magnifying glasses and mirrors to burn strings, pop balloons, and melt bits of ice. Even if you’re Rube Goldberg’d out lately, this is worth a watch. (via The Kid Should See This)
As part of a new exhibition at Black Book Gallery in Denver, artists Deepti Nair and Harikrishnan Panicker (aka. Hari & Deepti), have created a new body of work titled “Oh, The Places You Will Go!” The artist couple were inspired by recent travels through Moab, Utah and Yellowstone, Wyoming, and transformed elements of their adventures into delicately hand-cut paper sculptures infused with mythology and science fiction. Each piece is lit from behind or below with LED strips and the boxes are exhibited in dark rooms to enhance the effect.
Most recently Hari & Deepti completed a commission for Neil Patrick Harris titled “The Magicians Hat” inspired by the “Rabbit in the Moon” legend, shown below. They will also have work on view at Art Basel Miami 2014 with Scope International Contemporary Art Show.
We’ve been huge fans of Hari & Deepti here on Colossal since first encountering their work early this year. It’s with great honor that we currently have a few of their sculptures gracing the masthead of this very website. You can see several more of their recent light box sculptures at Black Book Gallery and follow their ongoing work on Instagram.
This independet film project from filmmaker Hiroshi Kondo starts as a fairly typical time-lapse journey through highways surrounding Tokyo, but quickly morphs into something entirely different. Kondo makes use of lampposts and other nighttime light sources to create this dazzling, kaleidoscopic explosion of color and motion set to music by Ayako Taniguchi.
In spring, firefly squid (hotaru ika) rise 2000 feet to the surface of the water and offer a fleeting glimpse of their magical lights
Genji botaru fireflies around a small bridge over the Shimanto River (Kochi Prefecture)
The moon lights up a waterfall against geometric rock formations / A close-up of the red-hot cinders erupting from the Showa crater on Sakurajima
Volcanic lightning during the eruption of the Sakurajima volcano
Scores of fishing rafts floating in the Uchino-umi highlighted by the light from the full moon
Japanese photographer Takehito Miyatake is known for his accomplished long-exposure photographs of fireflies, volcanic eruptions, and beaches awash in bioluminescencnt firefly squid. His exposures, which he refers to as “the light of Japan,” can last anywhere between 15 seconds and 30 minutes and are rooted in an almost meditative approach to photography that he likens to a form of poetry in an interview with TIME. His time spent waiting for each exposure hasn’t been in vain, Miyatake recently won the Grand Prize at the 2014 Nikkei National Geographic Photo Awards. You can see more of his photography on his website and over on Spoon & Tamago.
Martin Kimbell is a photographer from England who utilizes LEDs and long exposure techniques to create airborne light forms that seem like trails of otherworldy spacecraft. My initial assumption was that Kimbell used some form of small drone with attached lights, similar to Andreas Feininger’s work with helicopters back in 1949, but the photographs are instead made with hoops lined with LEDs that are hurled into the air. Kimbell was inspired early on by the work of Arizona-based photographer Stu Jenks who uses light and fire to create similar tornado-like images. You can see more of Kimbell’s work over on Flickr.
Canadian design collective Daily Tous Les Jours (previously) was recently invited to bring their fantastic musical light swing installation to the Green Box Arts Festival in Green Mountain Falls, Colorado. The interactive swing set titled simply, The Swings, is comprised of illuminated panels that also trigger audible tones that harmonize as people swing. As more and more people join in the act of swinging turns into randomly improvised melody and light show. From their project site:
The Swings allow participants to make music with their entire bodies, to connect to one another and to have a sense of ownership of public space due to the music they create. The result is a giant collective instrument that brings together people of all ages and backgrounds. The project offers a new experience in collective music making, available to enliven urban spaces, festivals, special events, and more.
The Swings were on view through July 11th of this month, but the entire installation is now on tour. If you’re interested in bringing it to your own arts event, get in touch at the bottom of this page.