I'm a freelance writer based in Perth, Western Australia, who enjoys writing about the things I love: travel, nature-based activities, the arts, spirituality and creative, fun activities for children.
Light up your life during the Perth Arts Festival
One of the many wonderful qualities of contemporary art is the way in which artists are free to work with a wide variety of media in order to express themselves and interpret the world around them in their own unique way: a dramatic contrast to earlier historical periods, when creative practice was governed by strict rules regarding composition, technique and media. This freedom will be particularly apparent over the weeks to come with the advent of the Perth International Arts Festival 2013, and the host of awesome exhibitions which are part of it.
Orbite Rosse (Red Orbits) by Grazia Toderi. Image is from Grazia Toderi's website.
A recurring theme during this year's festival is light, and many of the participating artists have used this element as a crucial feature of their work. While the quality of light is as old as the earth itself, as we're all aware, the discovery and development of electric lighting is only a relatively recent manifestation, dating back to the nineteenth century. Although the motivation for early development was largely pragmatic, over recent decades the humble electric light has become yet another media through which visual artists have chosen to express themselves. During the weeks to come, Perth locals will have the opportunity to ponder upon and appreciate light in its multifarious forms, and how it can be a thing of beauty as well one of practicality.
The following are some of the brilliant and illuminating works which are scattered throughout the city as part of the 2013 Perth International Arts Festival. Take advantage of their sojourn in our city, and light up your life by paying them a visit.
Located in Kings Park, Jim Campbell's remarkable Scattered Light is a dramatic and beautiful homage to the humble light-bulb. While the installation appears simply as a canopy of suspended light bulbs during the day, as night descends, it comes alive as a flickering, three-dimensional screen of light which reflects the frenetic pace of modern city life.
Scattered Light by Jim Campbell. Image is from the Perth International Arts Festival website.
Jim Campbell is a contemporary American media artist who is currently based in San Francisco, and primarily works with LED light installations, frequently combining them with film and sound. He utilises his academic background of mathematics and electrical engineering in his work, and his creations have been described as a 'monument to art and science combined.'
Campbell's work is part of numerous public collections throughout the world, especially in the United States. Over recent years Scattered Light has featured in various arts precincts and festivals including the Madison Square Park Conservancy in Manhattan in 2010 and the Northern Lights Arts Festival at St. Paul, Minnesota in 2011. During the Perth International Arts Festival it can be seen on Fraser Avenue in Kings Park daily, free of charge. Lights will be switched on at 7.30pm until midnight.
Grazia Toderi Internationally acclaimed Italian artist, Grazia Toderi, will be holding her first solo exhibition in Australia during the Perth Arts Festival at the John Curtin Gallery at Curtin University, on Kent Street, Bentley. Using light as her medium via the device of a mirror lens, Toderi's work incorporates layers of drawings, photographs and maps to create intriguing cityscapes on film which have been described as 'frescoes of light'. Further enhancing their mesmerising yet disquieting ambiance, they're accompanied by a unique soundtrack.
One of Grazia Toderi's 'frescoes of light'. Image is from the Perth International Arts Festival website.
Toderi's exhibition will be open at the John Curtin Gallery every day from Tuesday, 5th February until Sunday, 14th April. The opening hours are 11am until 5pm on weekdays, and 12pm until 4pm on weekends. Admission is free.
Luminousflux According to the science of photometry, luminous flux is the measure of light's perceived power. However, during the Perth Arts Festival, Luminousflux is an exhibition celebrating the various ways in which artists have incorporated the magical quality of light into their work throughout the twentieth century, and how contemporary practitioners continue to experiment and play with it.
Luminousflux @ UWA. Image is from the Perth International Arts Festival website.
The exhibition examines the diverse ways in which light has been captured and harnessed including the use of neon light, reflective surfaces, and light boxes. It also takes into account the way that light is frequently utilised in contemporary installation works. Many of the works included in this exhibition have been specially commissioned, while others are on loan from the Kerry Stokes Collection.
Luminousflux can be seen at the Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery at the Dr Harold Schenberg Art Centre, University of Western Australia, from Saturday 9th February until Saturday 20th April. The exhibition will be open from Tuesday to Saturday, 11am until 5pm. Admission is free.
A collective of London based artists with a passion for public-activated art, sculpture and interactive installations, Greyworld will also be part of this year's Perth Arts Festival, with a dynamic installation at Brookfield Place and a participatory project, Words, which is part of the Luminousflux exhibition at the Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery.
One of Greyworld's installations. Image is from the Perth International Arts Festival website.
The vibrant and very inclusive work of Greyworld will be sure to inspire and intrigue Perth locals during the Perth Festival, from February 8th until March 2nd. Brookfield Place, Perth's newest public space is situated in the heart of the city at 123 - 137 St. George's Terrace.
Australian artist, Ross Manning, will be presenting his first major solo exhibition, Volumes, as part of the Perth Arts Festival. Using light as his chosen medium, but also adopting a diverse assortment of props including domestic fans and light prisms, he explores the dynamic and playful qualities which are inherent within it. Manning is especially renowned for his dynamic kinetic light mobiles and installations.
Volumes by Ross Manning. Image is from the Perth International Arts Festival website.
Volumes will be showing at the Perth Institute of Contemporary Art (PICA) at the Perth Cultural Centre on James Street, Northbridge , from Saturday 16th February until Sunday 7th April. The Gallery is open from Tuesday to Sunday each week, from 11am until 6pm.