Created specifically for se!, Opal Eyes is an exhibition of new work by Philip Glazer (Denmark), Fraser Gray (Scotland) and Russell Leng (Canada).
Taking digital screens as its starting point the installation contains the artists’ playful attempts to translate their look and feel into physical materials.
Each artist has a background in painting, but has created new work using ceramics, translucent window films, textiles and polystyrene. Texture and light are utilized in works which reference visual experiences in digital worlds. In opposition to the binary rules of the digital space, the works in this exhibition are made to change and react to outside stimuli.
Glazer’s lenticular sculptures populate the space and appear to move as they are viewed from different angles. These sculptures appear alluring, with their unusual materials and iridescent finishes, but have a darker side as they track visitors around the room.
The artworks also take cues from the ways we interact with the screen - scrolling, swiping, typing and clicking. Leng’s pieces started as drawings made to record plants, rocks, shells and other elements found while physically exploring VR landscapes. These ‘digital en plein air’ sketches were then used to translate his findings into a ceramic hanging garland.
Gray’s window films translate images through building up images via layers of colour placed on top of each other. This process dates back to early printing techniques, although in this instance is created digitally. The outcome, a large window film utilises natural and unnatural light sources to mimic a glowing screen, whilst also referencing traditional stained glass windows. This work makes reference to augmented reality apps, as stacked layers of coloured translucent film are applied directly to the galleries window superimposed onto the world outside it.