AfterImage is a site-specific installation produced by three leading UK scientists that provides a uniqueperspective on light and colour as part of the Dan Flavin: A Retrospective exhibition at the Hayward gallery. Designed and curated by Dr Mark Lythgoe in collaboration with Dr Mark Miodownik and Dr Beau Lotto, this immersive space will examine the limits of human perception and our relationship with its discrepancy from reality. This dual display of what is seen and what courses beneath the surface brings us to the core substance of what we perceive in Flavin’s work. It aims to make visible the connections between the scientific and artistic explorations of light and colour, probing the thin membrane between the ‘reality’ and our ‘perception’ of the physical world.
Generation of light, the phenomenon of fluorescence and our relationship with colour will be the main themes of the exhibit. The theatre of Victorian electrostatics is resurrected with the world’s largest Wimshurst machine. Its salient motion draws striking sparks above a collection of images and stills that reflect the historical significance of the science behind Flavin’s work. Contained within darkened walls are optically active objects that induce transformation in light, and glow with an eerie disembodied quality that only florescent material can provide. We use these objects as a vocabulary to deconstruct fluorescence and expose it's animal, mineral and vegetable nature. Finally, context is everything when it comes to what we see. Here, amidst Dan Flavin’s sculptures of light and colour, we discover that the relationship between the external world of light and our internal world of colour are far from simple and by exploring this complex relationship we can begin to understand how and why we see what we do.
Co-ordinated and produced by Dr Mark Lythgoe.
Wimshurst project was conceived by Dr Mark Lythgoe and Jack Wells, Radiology and Physics Unit, UCL Institute of Child Health, UCL.
Timeline projection - Jack Wells and Mark Lythgoe - PDF download
Colour space was designed by Dr Beau Lotto, The Lottolab, Institute of Ophthalmology, UCL.
Materials have been curated by Dr Mark Miodownik and Zoe Laughlin, Materials Group, Engineering Division, Kings College London.
Wimshurst machine was built by Machinehouse. With thanks to Screenhouse Productions and YAP Films. For more information visit www.machinehouse.co.uk .