Sam Mitchell-fin is inspired by the perception, projection and reception of light in all its forms. Her forthcoming exhibition at Gallery 2010 Triginta, is a collection of minimalist neon works. We visited the artist at the new Kaleidoscope Gallery in Chippendale, a space she co directs with fellow Sydney artist Brad Robson.
What interests you about light as an artistic medium?
“I started out as a filmmaker, convinced that making films was the easiest way that I could capture light. My obsession with light started at an early age; pretty much from the first time that I saw rainbow bend from a piece of glass. I am really interested in how certain colours or frequencies of light affect us in physical ways. How we can be moved, even challenged by it. I am excited by the way light works within a physical space – like that first time that I saw light through a glass prism, and was mesmerised, i am still excited by the way projected light in all it’s forms bends around corners, creeps through crevices.”
What is special about neon?
“To me, neon seemed like a logical progression from film. The abstract nature of neon means that hopefully people who view the work will have their own experience, and possibly even acknowledge their own moment in time. The way that we curiously engage with the different elements of neon – the gases, the wiring, the juxtaposition of taking a utilitarian medium and placing within a gallery context assists with this. The kitsch nature of neon also, the way that it perfectly dances between low and high art, is what helps make it special. It’s a medium that is still intriguing me, and I enjoy testing it’s limits.”
What is the idea behind Triginta?
“Triginta is a collection of 10 pieces (including one series) that represents significant moments in my life leading up to the age of 30. Building the collection has been a way for me to deal with these moments and also share them. And hopefully people will make their own connections, look to the floor, walls, the light wrapping around corners and be reminded of their own significant moments – hopefully recognising the beauty in all, good or bad – they all add to our colour.”
I wish I could tell you, but I can’t find the words; it was strong, I do know that. I can say that, 2012. Currently on display at Kaleidoscope Gallery for the exhibition 33 Degrees until March 20, 2013.
“In unexpected places, light can find you – through the darkness, wrapped around corners… shapes and contours of the structures we see around us. The world is a place where light will always find you.”
Triginta by Sam Mitchell-fin opens at Gallery 2010 Thursday 14 March 2013 from 6 – 8pm. The exhibition continues Friday 15 March 6 – 8pm, Saturday 16 March 10am – 4pm, Sunday 17 March 11am – 3pm, Saturday 23 March 10am – 4pm and Sunday 24 March 11am – 3pm. Exhibition also open by appointment.