Saturday, October 25, 2008

Plasma Nation, coming to the Float Gallery

Bay Area Artist’s ignite the 4th state of matter.

art can be dangerous, a group show of plasma & neon sculptors, and the paintings of Sally Rodriguez.

Opening Artist Party November 15th 6-9pm

With live Music by: Outlaw Dervish 11/15 6-9pm, Free!

Show runs November 10th through January 10th, 2009

Closing Party including DJ music and a free plasma educational presentation by Ed Kirshner.
January 10th, 6-9pm

Bay Area plasma & neon sculptors offer a tasty array, of the 4th state of matter. Plasma is a rare and highly experimental art form. Using high voltage transformers, hand blown or found glass, these artists capture not only our imagination, but hold hostage and manipulate noble gasses to create contained kinetic magic.

What is plasma?

Plasma is commonly described in nature as the fourth state of matter and is also known as the most widespread phenomena in the universe. Plasma typically takes the form of neutral gas-like clouds (e.g. stars, and our sun). It is considered distinct from other lower-energy states of matter; most commonly solids, liquids and gas, although it is closely related to the gas phase in that it also has no definite form or volume.

Plasma rarely occurs naturally on earth, and when it does, its effects are visually and energetically dramatic. Lightning storms are one example, another is the Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights, seen as energy pours into earth’s atmosphere.

Plasmas have only recently been incorporated into a variety of sculptural art forms using plasma ionization by high frequency electrical current. In this way creating illuminated sculptures that have the ability to display a visual lighting effect of movement and colors found in no other medium. Although this technology is considered cutting edge, and in its infancy, much has been learned to be able to control specific and desired effects. Yet, it is likely that there is still much yet to be discovered.

Plasma Nation Artists include:

Norman Moore
“My sculpture uses various materials in combination with light to create a physical poetry borne out of urban experience. I am interested in the metaphors light and shadow evoke such as life, death, enlightenment, blood, distraction and lust. I am always looking for the story behind objects and finding meaning in forms. Walking in twilight, I see light splashing and reflecting in odd locations that spark my imagination. The unexpected relationship of light coloring an object changes my perception of the world”

Ed Kirshner
“Like Dr. Frankenstein in his lab, I hover over my glass and gas plasma work, spending many hours mixing, balancing and fine-tuning. Still, the plasma light behaves in a way that I can never completely control. I can change or direct its behavior by varying the pressure and mix of gases, or the frequency and the voltage of the power, but I can never fully predict the detailed effects any of my actions will have. Though frustrating at times, this unpredictability is at the very heart of my work. This is the personality, the mystery, the life that I try to create in my sculpture”

Michael Pargett
Is Co-Curator on this exhibit. Pargett enjoys the paradox between the high energy that creates the illumination, and the slow, sensual movement of the gas mixtures that can be achieved to present a visual experience that is as compelling as it is hard to describe. His expressions are at times humorous and at others inspired by a desire to honor the basic elements of the gasses themselves. During the filling portion of the creative process, he attempts to allow the gases themselves to express how they would like to manifest within the glass. “They feel as though they have something to communicate, this medium perhaps gives them a unique opportunity!”

Bill Concannon
Concannon has been working with neon since 1973. In 1975 he started his own neon studio, Aargon Neon, making neon sign props and special effects neon for the motion picture industry, as well as commercial neon signs and his sculpture. Bill has worked as an instructor teaching neon sculpture at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco and the Pilchuck Glass School just north of Seattle. His sculpture has been shown nationally and internationally since 1977. This past June, Bill was invited to present his lecture, “Glass Graphics: The Joy of Signs,” to the Glass Art Society Conference in Portland, OR.

David Hollister
Hollister is a woodworker and sculptor who has lived and worked in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1996. His furniture and sculptures have been shown throughout the Bay Area. “I graduated from Washington University in St. Louis. While in school I discovered my affinity for design and took the opportunity to study furniture and lighting on my way to a degree in architecture. After a period spent working in construction and traveling, I left architecture. While visiting many of the structures I had studied in school, I realized that I felt less of a connection to the buildings than I did to the furnishings and art. In addition to my artistic pursuits, I am the wood shop technician at the Crucible in Oakland. I work primarily in wood and light, but have also created pieces using stone, metal, and plastics.”

Ken Herrick
“I’m fourth in a five-generation line of artists, but the art-gene, so to speak, expressed itself late. Only at age 35 or so did I start making art, although from my earliest days I’ve been a maker of “things" of one sort or another. I completed my first artwork, an interactive kinetic one, in the early ‘70s. Since then I've made other kinetic works, most of them interactive. In the '80s I got into incorporating neon in my work, going so far as to secure several patents on, and license for manufacture, a neon effect I called “Neon Bubbles”. I've derived little income from the art, or from the Bubbles for that matter, but such is life and such is art...”

Allison F. Walton
Curator, and co-owner of the FLOAT Gallery, Walton has been a lifelong artist and collector She will be displaying a xenon plasma robot head that is still awaiting a body.

About the Music:

Outlaw Dervish Outlaw Dervish is World Lounge Music with Soul! Enjoy the stylings of Didjeridu Trip Hop, leaning into Deep Chill and Ambient sound with an Electro-Acoustic tint, immersed in sweet melodies and infectious rhythms. The group features Travis Wernet and Special Guests.

About the painter:

Sally Rodriguez began painting in 2003 while living in Missoula, Montana, she is entirely self taught, and works in a wide variety of painting styles and mediums. Her work creates an ethereal experience filled with colorful characters and festive vibrancy. Educated at the University of California Santa Cruz she holds a Bachelors degree in Women's Studies, with a minor in Latin American History. Rodriguez, then 36 found artistic expression so powerful, that she has continued to explore reality through the means of color, texture, and form. Presently she works full time as an artist and a teacher.

This Exhibit is in partnership with The Crucible

FLOAT Gallery