Glass Installations by Chris Wood
Art and science have intersected from the beginning, particularly when philosophers, physicists, and astrophysicists alike began to look at light and color, and our ability to perceive it. Once we learnt of the colors that light was made from, and how the world refracted and reflected this light, the way was paved for technological intentions such as the camera, the laser, and the projector. Similarly, the ability to see beyond our own human perceptions into outer-space light through telescopic inventions eventually moved science forward in leaps and bounds.
UK artist Chris Wood’s work in Geometric Dichrioc Glass installations cause the viewer to think about all these things, simply by presenting us with pretty lights. She works by installing glass onto walls that refract light and cause kaleidoscopic reflections and mandala-inspired mazes to appear in the shadows. The glass seen in these works is ‘dichroic’ – a two-tone material with a special optical coating that only reflects certain wavelengths of light. Interestingly, NASA invented this material in the 1950s, further adding to Wood’s nod to physics and the space-race.
In this way, Wood is a craftswoman of light. Her job isn’t to create the colors, but to situate her artworks so that the light can perform its own bootstrap tricks. As she says on her website, "The optical materials I use in my work range from a simple water filled wine glass to the highly technical dichroic glass, basically anything that allows me to express the magic of light."
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