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ART & DESIGN / EXHIBITION

Left top The creative focus of the exhibition concerned exploring newly discovered lighting effects, such as edge lighting and the use of TIR optics. Right top The work should not only be viewed as art, as it also has a functional value, as the fixtures could be used in interior design. Right below Epic was one of Newberry’s favourite pieces and was derived from a sample of holographic light diffuser discovered at the ARC show in 2012.

was like a massive toy shop for a kid. Part of me wanted to kick down a few doors and so part of my mission was to demonstrate the force of creativity.” When pressed to define the difference between art and design Newberry hesitates in offering a distinction admitting to existential worries that, over time, led to a conviction that lighting sculpture is truly a powerful art form. Yet, like product design, it cannot only be viewed as a pure art form since it also has functional value. “Obviously putting three-dimensional forms into a gallery presupposes an artistic intent,” Newberry says, “but it is really up to the viewers to decide. Ultimately, value will be determined by the customer.” The four-room gallery was a daunting space and Newberry was initially concerned that he would not be able to fill it. Once started though his work grew quickly and Newberry explored tensile structures to create fabric

forms with interesting three-dimensional surfaces. These sculptural pieces defined the content of galleries two and three. “The creative focus then turned to exploring discovered lighting effects, such as edge-lighting an acrylic tube and extracting light with surface decoration and using TIR optics to project a ring of light”. The inspiration for what was labelled as the ‘magic’ series in galleries one and four was comprised simply of things that Newberry found interesting whilst ‘playing’ with light and different materials. “One of my favourite pieces that featured in the exhibition was Epic,” Newberry coments, “partly because it is so difficult to fathom how it works yet is really very simple. It derived from a sample of holographic light diffuser, picked up at the ARC exhibition in 2012, that displays a ring of light on the surface when held over a point light source. With tape LED you get a string

of point light sources and so a string of rings is observed and this gets really interesting if you vary the distance of the LED behind to alter the size of circle. It is then a short step to be able to write in italic-style script, moderating the thickness of line. In fact I had settled on ‘glow’ as the word but was persuaded by my 11 year-old daughter to change it to ‘Epic’.” The resulting effect is spellbinding, both at a distance and close-up and, like the whole collection, is truly original. Newberry is now looking to the next opportunity to innovate, both in the commercial lighting sector and art installations. This unusual and courageous exhibition achieved its purpose in producing a powerful, coherent essay on creativity. The exhibition dared to be different and in the process displayed a noteworthy originality. www.opiusdesign.co.uk

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mondo*arc Jun/Jul 2014 - Issue 79  

mondo*arc is the leading international magazine in architectural lighting design. Targeted specifically at the lighting specification market...

mondo*arc Jun/Jul 2014 - Issue 79  

mondo*arc is the leading international magazine in architectural lighting design. Targeted specifically at the lighting specification market...

Profile for mondiale