{ sunlight }


A philosophic and poetic art investigation of our relationship to bending sunlight.

My artistic endeavours unfold using the absence and control of light – darkrooms, lightboxes, camera obscuras, dia-slideshows. Imagery to find ghosts and traces of illumination and meaning. Solkatts in that way are also photographs – but in a state of past and presence; an ambiguity that fits with its image as a warm oasis alone in the frost; a deformed ventriloquism of the Sun. Not a clean spectacle, but a haze with texture and movement. Light appreciated through the lens of indexicality. I see these phenomena in three systems of knowledge.

Folkloric – with obsidian mirrors and gold-dusted bodies of water, we interface with the Sun. Through the ephemeral ecology of sunlight and the oceanic feeling of entanglement. Instances of magic, rituals, anthropology and anecdotal joy.

Scientific – an ontological understanding of sunlight as dissecting the optical illusion with an obsidian scalpel. Silver nitrate heliostats and azimuthal fresnel lenses. Liquid mirror telescopes and an understanding of photons and their superposition being twinned.

Poetic – where the encounter with sunlight and mirroring talks about the absent and the speculative narrative of the absent and in-between. Jorge Louis Borges believes it only takes two facing mirrors to build a labyrinth. Calvino’s cities are a mirage of components that, when pieced together, glint in fragments of oscillating possibility.

Through looking at sunlight through these three prisms in my artistry, is to understand and scrutinise how the magic trick works; to hold it up to the light, and still be moved by it anyway. By intersecting between these, I hope to open the doors to a Quiet Sublime, and to a way of seeing it all around us – bouncing off office windows, telescopes, divine utterances. A dedication to Prometheus, to our hubris, to an absence that defines it; the Sun’s warmth living on our skin and feeling gravity in our feet.


Andy Allen-Olivar