1989

1989

An installation created for LUMO 2021 – under the theme of ‘Back to New’.

9 pieces were installed throughout an empty shop for he weekend of the light festival. Mainly based on creating moving shapes by combining straight lines of light and organic structures of material.

This was an idea originally developed with an animator called Mark Lewis in his flat above a pet shop in Newport, Gwent in 1989. We would get together every Sunday to experiment with slide projectors, super8 loops and scraps of tulle, creating laser-like effects that we installed in warehouse parties and nightclubs across South Wales. These temperamental light sculptures featured heavily in the raves we created under the name of UFO (Underground Freak Out). Mark developed the idea further for an exhibition in Walsall Art Gallery a few years later.

Revisiting the concept in 2021, I now have access to data projectors, animation software and even a real laser, which makes the whole thing somewhat easier. The interesting thing, however, is that the nicest effects in this collection were produced by a slide projector, some tin foil, a mirrorball rotator attached to an oscillating wooden platform and some wiggly wire sewn into a length of tulle – fully analogue, just like 1989.

Thanks to LUMO and Valve for supporting and Mika Kiviniemi for the loan of his rotators.

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