Ken Matsubara: From Photography to Light-based Media

It was in Gdansk, in 2010, when I saw Ken Matsubara’s photographic work for the first time at the Center for Contemporary Art CCA ŁAŹNIA. I was working on NARRACJE, an international art-in-public-space project, which I curated from 2009 to 2011. The title of the exhibition was “Archetyp Fotografii”

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8 July 2020, 6.00 pm _ ZOOM Access, please send an email to Or watch the live stream on facebook Art in Public Space after the Corona Crash: Summary of the first public meet-up on 10 June 2020 of art-in-public-space projects and festivals of light discussing the impact and the responses to the Corona pandemic.

Mary Corse: A Survey in Light

The exhibition project “Mary Corse: A Survey in Light” is organized by the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, in association with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art by Kim Conaty, Steven and Ann Ames Curator of Drawings and Prints with Melinda Lang, curatorial assistant.

Chloe Wyma: History of Light: The Pioneers, From Robert Irwin to Anthony McCall

_ In the mid-1960s, a loosely affiliated cadre of artists based in Southern California including Robert Irwin, James Turrell, and Doug Wheeler — frustrated by the limitations of abstract painting — turned their attention away from the creation of conventional art objects and towards sensory perception itself.

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Tilen Sepic: Light Oscillator

_ Tilen Sepič is an explorative designer and artist. In his transdisciplinary practice, he refers to natural and social sciences, material and technological developments, ethical and esthetical aspects. He analyses material properties and interrelations, key functions and system structures, physical and sensual phenomena. His imagery, his objects, and installations are illustrations, sensory fields or perceptual spaces that stage complex contexts.

Christine Sciulli: Meandering Light

_ The Concrete Art of American artist Christine Sciulli plays with the geometries of light. Its attraction and its poetics are due to Sciulli’s outstanding sense for complex visual arrangements. Her present series of large-scale, site-specific interventions display animated white circles projected onto arbitrary surfaces. This allows the white animation lines to meander between the visible and non-visible, leading to an enchanting visual experience.

Light in Fine Art

_ Contemporary light artworks are characterized by the reflected use of physical light. They explore light as a medium of display, of imaging or of perception. Artistic practices include darkness and shadow images, translucent materials, light-reflecting pigments and illuminated canvases, light filters and all kinds of requisites, displays of light sources and all types of projections.

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Cuppetelli and Mendoza: The Art of Interference

_ “Pictures that attack the eye” was the explaining headline of a feature on Op-art in the Time Magazine published on October 23, 1964. “Preying and playing on the fallibility in vision is the new movement of “optical art” that has sprung up across the Western world. No less a break from abstract expressionism than pop art, op art is made tantalizing, eye-teasing, even eye-smarting by visual researchers using all the ingredients…” were the opening lines and in fact, Op-art compositions create a sort of visual tension in the viewer’s mind that evoke the illusion of space and movement.

On FERMENT by Christine Sciulli

We met at the Center for International Light Art in Unna, where Christine Sciulli currently presents her site-specific installation FERMENT for the exhibition program HYPERsculptures, open to the public from November 2022 to April 2023. She is one of the participating artists along with Squidsoup, Julius Stahl, Philip Vermeulen, and Giny Vos. After descending 10 Meters into the Center for International Light Art, we enter the dark vaulted exhibition space which FERMENT inhabits. The ambiguous cloud before us seems to be a living organism.

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Shifting Focus

Whether artists are exploring line, color, shape, and form or space, time, and motion or sight and perception, at one point they arrive to light as material or medium to be included in artistic reflection and concept, impartially if they are working in the analog or the digital sphere. This is a collection of traces that can feed a mind map to formulate questions of analysis and inquisitive perspectives to follow up the developments of natural, technical, and digital transformation of light rendering visible the world.

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Hartung | Trenz in der Kulturkirche Bremerhaven

Auszüge aus der Rede zur Eröffnung der Ausstellung von Hartung | Trenz in der Kulturkirche Bremerhaven am 31. Oktober 2019. Wir befinden uns in der Pauluskirche in Bremerhaven, gebaut mit rotem Backstein im neugotischen Stil. 1905 wurde sie erstmals eingeweiht, nach dem Zweiten Weltkrieg musste sie wieder aufgebaut werden. Seit 1953 ist sie der Treffpunkt der Evangelisch-Lutherischen Kirchengemeinde im Stadtteil Lehe. Es ist ein Arbeiterviertel, in dem viele Kulturen gelebt werden. Lehe gilt als sozialer Brennpunkt, die Arbeitslosigkeit liegt bei 29 Prozent, die Kinderarmut bei 48 Prozent.

Bettina Pelz: Ingo Wendt: Metamatische Lichtmaschinen

Entdeckungen beim Nachdenken über die Werkzeugkiste von Ingo Wendt _ Ingo Wendts Arbeiten profitieren von Lust am Experiment und von viel Lebenserfahrung, von Know-how und Freude am Spielen, von Neugierde und Weltzugewandtheit. Er arbeitet entlang der Dehnungsfugen von Tatsachen und Technik. Er sammelt Himmelslicht auf Spiegelfolie oder projiziert Schattenfiguren auf Raumwände. Zu seinen aktuellen Werken gehören ein Seifenblasen- und ein Konfetti-Projektor, ein Ornamentgenerator und ein Farblicht-Chronotop.



Bettina Pelz: Hartung | Trenz: Responsive Typography (en)

_ To-be-seen texts and books as art works, typographic spatial installations, dynamic text banners, luminous neon texts and letter projections as spatial interventions – the typographic exploration of text as material and medium is extant in contemporary fine arts. For more than twenty years Detlef Hartung und Georg Trenz are contributing to the artistic assessment of typography. In their spatial projections they reconnoiter the relationship of text to image to space to light to sense. Found sites in their architectural, sociocultural and historic dimension have been inspirational gateways for their projection works.

On “Submergence” by Squidsoup

The installation “Submergence” by the transdisciplinary collective Squidsoup is set up at the Center for International Light Art in Unna (Germany). The artists are known for large-scale, digital objects and environments, and “Submergence” is one of their signature works. It is part of the current exhibition program “HYPERsculptures” on display from November 2022 to April 2023 with artwork by Christine Sciulli, Julius Stahl, Philip Vermeulen, and Giny Vos. “We’ve loved the subterranean vaults at Unna ever since first visiting around 2015

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Bettina Pelz

Curator, writer, researcher Over the last twenty years, the curatorial work of Bettina Pelz is dedicated to art-in-context projects. Her transdisciplinary projects are hosted at art institutions and in public space, in postindustrial environments and cultural heritage environments. She has been internationally involved in projects in Africa, Asia, in Europe as well as in North and South America. Since 2000, the focus of her curatorial research and practice is on light and media in fine arts. She has been the founding curator of several sustainable light and media art projects in Europe and Africa, among them LICHTROUTEN since 2002, GLOW from 2006 to 2009, NARRACJE from 2009 to 2011, LICHTUNGEN from 2015 to 2018, INTERFERENCE […]

Bettina Pelz: NARRACJE 2009 – 2019

“NARRACJE was a new experience in Poland”, said Robert Sochacki when looking back on the NARRACJE experience over the last 10 years. He is an artist, curator and academic based in Gdansk. “As an artist and as a citizen, I was very excited to see that people came from all over the Tri-City and even further. It was an extraordinaire phenomenon to see all these people walking around at night – looking for art.”

Bettina Pelz: SVETLOBNA GVERILA Ljubljana 2019

How to make a site-specific, context-sensitive and light-based exhibition project? _ Ljubljana is a buzzing city with bars, cafés and clubs, a great diversity of microbreweries and an international food scene. The inner city is closed for cars and in the middle of June 1000s of visitors are strolling between the many museums and the many shops, testing wine or checking the second-hand market. Today Ljubljana is the largest city of Slovenia and its cultural, economic and political center. Like many other cities in Europe, it hosts a festival of light, but this one is unique.

Bettina Pelz: SKLAD Skopje.nmk 2019

How to work with art in public space in the capital of kitsch? _ The second edition of the international festival of light SKOPJE LIGHT ART DISTRCIT took place from May 29 to June 1, 2019 in the capital of North-Macedonia. The decentral exhibition project hosted 24 artists from North-Macedonia, the Balkan and Europe, all working with light as material or medium. MAP>>

Bettina Pelz: UMBRA 2019

A New Festival of Light in Spain _ In northern Spain, the UMBRA Light Festival took place. From February 21 to 23, 2019, Vitoria-Gasteiz was the perfect stage for its first edition. The festival of light allowed us as visitors swiftly to understand the assets of the city. Like many of the other European festivals of light, the success of this new festival of light is based on altering of city sights and audience experiences of urban contexts.

Bettina Pelz: SEGOU YELEN Sé 2019

From Tunis To Ségou _ Working With Light As Artistic Material _ SEGOU’ART is an international gathering of artists and curators, critics and collectors, art initiatives and gallerists to improve exchange, debate and dissemination of contemporary fine art across the African continent. Exhibition projects and concerts, workshops and lectures, roundtables and debates are choreographed to be a dense program. In February 2019, it took place for the second time, for the first time it includes a decentral exhibition project dedicated to light and media art. Aymen Gharbi and I were the curators.

Bettina Pelz: NE TEMNO 2018

_ “We choose the longest night of the year as the perfect time for our light art project”, said founder Evgenia Nikitina when talking about NE TEMNO, the international light art project that takes place in Designed to be a night-time event, all artworks on display use natural and artificial light as material, tool or medium to draw or to paint, to form and to build, to reflect or to project.

Bettina Pelz: Atsara _ Poetry of Physics

_ Audrey Rocher and Roland Devocelle are the artists’ collective “Atsara”. Their artistic research is dedicated to physical structures and principals as aesthetic phenomena and poetical realms. They travelled from Agen in the south of France to Hildesheim to realize a site-specific version of the installation “[M]ondes” at the outlook “Berghölzchen”.

Mary Corse: Lisson Gallery London

Mary Corse: May 11 to June 23, 2018. Lisson Gallery London _ Between 1965 and 1968, her interest in creating space continued with a series of triangular column sculptures, wall-mounted constructions of painted wood and Plexiglas and electric light boxes.

molitor & kuzmin: Wir sind sehr konkret in unserer Arbeitsweise

_ “We work with mass materials, and for us, fluorescent lamps are a tool for composing, not on a limited screen, but in the open space.” Since 1996, physical light has been the central material of their artistic expression. “When we started experimenting with electric light, we weren’t really interested in technology. The aesthetic phenomenon was more important to us. We were thrilled that we found a material that sought dialogue with the spatial dimension.”

Judith Roeder: Diaphane Structures

_ For more than fifteen years, glass and its physical, esthetical and metaphorical assets have been the material and the qualities of choice for the artistic research of Judith Roeder. She focuses on the differentiation between the translucent properties of glass in opposition to its reflection and refraction properties when filtering light.

joeressen+kessner: Semantic Mapping

_ joeressen+kessner engender site-specific interventions that allow to perceive, to understand and to categorize a site in a new quality. Preferred, they work with historically charged sites to which they respond with transmedia interventions. Their works are digitals systems that interfere with the analog status quo via image and sound applications. They generate data systems that control audiovisual projections which are applied in real-time to a chosen environment.

Mischa Kuball: Based On Conversation

_ Kuball ’s works encompass objects, installations, and interventions that reflect on visual organization, its impact on consciousness and on outlook on the world. His works can be found in white cubes and black boxes, in all kinds of exhibitions spaces as well as in public spaces; they can be temporary as well as permanent.

Houda Ghorbel + Wadi Mhiri: Witnessing the Present

_ Houda Ghorbel and Wadi Mhiri are working as an artistic tandem of different backgrounds encompassing professional practice in fine art, design, architecture and community work. They are dedicated to sociocultural and political, religious and philosophical issues. Collective memory and identity, societal coherence and civic engagement, democratic culture and freedom of expression are reoccurring subjects of their artistic research and articulation.

Kurt Laurenz Theinert: I Like The Challenge Of Improvisation

_ My understanding of light is rooted in photography _ designing photographs, taking them and making them, all processes are light-related and they taught me the edges, the needs, and possibilities of visuality. The deeper my understanding grew, the more I wanted to share this experience – the process of appearance and disappearance or of the “happening” – with others, of course with artists and curators but as well as with an attentive audience.

Hartung | Trenz: Responsive Typography (de)

Strahlende Neontexte, dynamische Leuchtschriftbänder, Buchstabenprojektionen als Rauminterventionen, Sehtexte und Buchobjekte – die künstlerische Auseinandersetzung mit Text als Material und Medium ist in der bildenden Kunst der Gegenwart in vielen Zusammenhägen präsent. Die Künstler Detlef Hartung und Georg Trenz gehören seit über 20 Jahren zu denen, die das Verhältnis von Sinn zu Text, von Text zu Raum, von Raum zu Licht und von Licht zu Bild ausloten.