Barry Underwood

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Art Photography

Barry Underwood Illuminates Human Presence in the Landscape in Geometric Light Sculptures

May 1, 2023

Kate Mothes

A photographic light sculpture.

All images © Barry Underwood, shared with permission

A variety of landscapes set the scene for Barry Underwood’s vivid sculptures (previously), illuminating sites of human interference and destruction. Utilizing LED lights and reflective materials, he challenges perceptions of flatness and depth and invites us to consider the significance of our surroundings. “Our understanding of landscape is a construct based upon what we want from the land and what we have experienced,” he says.

Underwood’s latest series Linear Construction—to which many of these images belongfocuses on visual illusions that reflect the land conservation paradoxes created by humans’ deep augmentation of the natural world,” he tells Colossal. While some images contain clear signs of intervention, such as a mown field or a stone wall, others require a closer look at a treeless river bank or a cleared meadow. The artist explores civilization’s impact on nature by superimposing geometric shapes onto landscapes, nodding to the precise angles of built structures and bright lights we might associate with warning flares or neon signs.

To achieve the images, Underwood experiments with what he calls “a catalog of visual devices. I try to find locations that I’m either shooting downhill or uphill to make the space look like it’s torqued,” playing with perception and taking multiple frames that are later stitched together in Photoshop to create what he describes as a “disruptive mood.”

Find more of Underwood’s work on his website, and learn more about his process on Instagram.


A photographic light sculpture.

A photographic light sculpture.

A photographic light sculpture.

  A photographic light sculpture.

A photographic light sculpture.

A photographic light sculpture.

A photographic light sculpture.




Art Photography

Landscape Light Installations by Barry Underwood

May 21, 2014

Christopher Jobson


Drawing inspiration from early theatrical training, and influenced by methods of staged photography and set design, artist Barry Underwood (previously) transforms ordinary landscapes into something out of science fiction. The artist utilizes LED lights, luminescent material, and other photographic effects to create fleeting abstract landscapes that are influenced by both accidental and incidental light. He shares via his artist statement:

My artwork examines community and land-use in rural, suburban and urban sites. I created this series of installations by researching local agricultural, industrial, and recreational land-use. Curiosity about ecological and social history of specific places drives my work. By revealing the beauty and potential of an ordinary landscape an everyday scene is transformed into a memorable, visual experience. Each photograph image is a dialogue – the result of my direct encounter with nature and history. Inspired by land art, landscape photography and painting, as well as cinema, my images are both surreal and familiar.

Underwood will open an exhibition of both old and new work at Sous Les Etoiles Gallery in New York titled Scenes, on May 29th, 2014. You can see more over on Johansson Projects and read a 2011 interview at Juxtapoz. Images courtesy Sous Les Etoiles Gallery and the artist.