Anthony McCall’s. Solid Light Works
At the LAC in Lugano.
Walk in the Light!
Walk in the Light!
Your first impression is dizzying. In the dark that envelops everything, you are afraid you might stumble over something that isn’t there. Anthony McCall’s “Solid Light Works” solo exhibition, curated by Bettina Della Casa, is made up of just that, works of solid light in the vast underground environment of the LAC in Lugano (until 31 January). The British artist, New Yorker by adoption, who has studied light, spaces and volumes as the basic elements of art since the 1970’s, invites you to experience the exhibition as a physical experience. As your pupils dilate in the darkness, five projectors trace luminous beams in the air that coil very slowly together to create profiles of inexistent sculptures and suspended ectoplasms. Entering into the fluorescent cones, instinct tells you to reach out your hand to grab the void, made dense by a vaporous haze created by old fog machines and smoke machines used in theaters and cinemas for black and white films.
The play of shadow and fog create (non-)bodily sensations and McCall has obtained his goal: put the viewer in the centre of the “frame”, stimulate his perceptions, conceptualize on the eternal themes of passing time and movement that changes things. In the span of an hour, a point of light expands to become a circle; this is the first historic work entitled Line Describing a Cone from 1973. This concept does not change in more recent works: ellipses, spirals, lemniscates (once he drew them on film, now he entrusts them to sophisticated digital animation) generate hypnotic images in space and in the mind of those who cross through the silence. The immersion into Meeting You Halfway and Face to Face leads the viewer to a subtle reflection on communication, on the possible dialogue between those you might meet in the light.
(from La Repubblica, ottobre 2015)