Formed at the intersection of painting, sculpture, and architecture, Lightpaintings are intangible, multi-dimensional compositions of pure radiance. STEPHEN KNAPP: NEW LIGHT, presents 12 of Knapp’s Lightpaintings on view January 26 – March 24, 2013 at the University of Miami Lowe Art Museum.
Stephen Knapp is an American artist best known as the creator of Lightpaintings, which have been called the first new art medium of the twenty-first century. Dispensing with traditional media and narrative content, Knapp is one of a small group of artists who work with light, creating Lightpaintings that make visible the light that surrounds us and transforming it into something physical yet inherently transcendental.
Deriving inspiration from his studies of light, color, dimension, space and perception, artist Stephen Knapp has been creating art that interacts with and is transformed by light for over thirty years. He began his career as a photographer and evolved his own specialized processes through research and experimentation. He progressed to building large metal panels and glazed ceramic murals that are reflective and responsive to changing light conditions. What followed was the fabrication of kiln-formed glass walls and glass and steel sculpture, all leading up to his more recent focus on Lightpaintings, a word Knapp coined to describe his light-based installations. Created with with light, treated glass, and stainless steel mounts, Lightpaintings exist at the crossroads of abstract painting, sculpture, and technology.
In speaking about his work, Stephen Knapp states, “I have been fascinated with light all my life, both for what it can do and for the effect it has on us. In all my prior mediums I’ve used light in ways that are not always apparent. When I found a way to uniquely express myself in light, I embraced it fully. With my Lightpaintings I separate white light into pure color and ‘paint’ with light. Each piece has a presence that far exceeds its physical dimensions. At once both physical objects and illusions, they remind us that dreams, hopes and aspirations are the center of art’s ability to touch the human spirit.”
Knapp has gained an international reputation for large-scale works of art held in museums, public, corporate and private collections, in media as diverse as light, kiln formed glass, metal, stone, mosaic and ceramic. He has had solo museum exhibitions at the Boise Art Museum, the Chrysler Museum of Art, the Naples Art Museum, the Butler Institute of Art, the Dayton Art Institute, and the Flint Institute of Arts, among others. His work has appeared in many international publications including Art and Antiques, Architectural Record, ARTnews, Ceramics Monthly, The Chicago Sun Times, Interior Design, The New York Times, Progressive Architecture, and Sculpture Magazine.
A member’s preview on Friday, January 25, 2013 will feature a lecture by the artist beginning at 7pm at the Storer Auditorium, University of Miami School of Business, with a reception following at 8pm at the Lowe Art Museum. The lecture is free for Lowe members and University of Miami students; the reception is free for Lowe members and $10 for non-members. The exhibition opening is in conjunction with the exhibition, Infinite Mirror: Images of American Identity.
Support for the exhibition at the Lowe Art Museum is provided in part through a grant from The Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council, and the Miami-Dade Mayor and Board of County Commissioners.
(top) Into Morning, 2007-2011. © Stephen Knapp.
(bottom) Capriccio, 2003. © Stephen Knapp.