Posters designed to support the International Year of Light in 2015 are part of collection to be shown in January in "The Art of Light and Technology" at Allied Arts of Whatcom County.
BELLINGHAM, Washington, USA -- A light-themed gallery exhibition sponsored by SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, is opening early next month -- just as the news of an International Year of Light and Light-Based Technologies has been proclaimed by the United Nations. "The Art of Light and Technology" will run through January at Allied Arts of Whatcom County in Bellingham, Washington, where the society's headquarters offices are located.
Works by three regional artists will be complemented by a display of 32 posters designed by students at the University of Applied Sciences in Offenburg, Germany, in support of the International Year of Light (IYL2015). The observance is sponsored by scientific and educational organizations worldwide, including SPIE, to promote improved public and political understanding of the central role of light in the modern world, and help raise awareness of the possibilities inherent in light-based science and engineering, said SPIE President-Elect Philip Stahl.
"Light is one of the ways we experience and represent our world, through vision and the visual arts," Stahl said. "It is central to how we express our deepest emotional and philosophical thoughts."
Light -- necessary to the existence and survival of life on Earth -- has from earliest times been a source of inspiration and fascination, and the subject of scientific and artistic explorations as well as observations of natural phenomena such as photosynthesis, sunsets and rainbows, noted SPIE CEO Eugene Arthurs.
"The capability to generate light was truly a revolution," Arthurs said. "Just think of how different our winters would be without the ability to flip a switch and lengthen the day."
In our modern times, photonics -- the science of light -- provides us with much more.
"Photonics-enabled technologies connect us with friends and family via the internet and smartphones, enable our doctors to find the exact cells in the body that need treatment with lasers or other light-based methods, keep firefighters and soldiers safe, power sustainable lighting and energy sources, and explore the universe through ground- and spaced-based telescopes," Arthurs said.
Artists participating in "The Art of Light and Technology" exhibition are:
- Gregory Dotson, who works with theoretical physicists to create computer-generated images that represent visual depictions of quantum objects and events
- Francie Allen, a dancer at heart whose sculptures of fabricated wire embodying that love of movement are enlivened by lighting -- and the resulting shadows
- Bryan McLinney, who has worked in neon for more than 20 years and creates blown-glass sculptures which light up with the help of these luminous gases.
SPIE is the international society for optics and photonics, a not-for-profit organization founded in 1955 to advance light-based technologies. The Society serves nearly 235,000 constituents from approximately 155 countries, offering conferences, continuing education, books, journals, and a digital library in support of interdisciplinary information exchange, professional networking, and patent precedent. SPIE provided $3.2 million in support of education and outreach programs in 2012.
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