Popular culture has lately focused on the idea of thought as creative energy capable of manifesting into physical form. Sanibel glass artist Luc Century has been exploring this dimension for 37 years which just might help raise the curtain on this new world.
With photo emulsion, a unique light source and a little alchemy – no camera, no enlarger, no lens – he has been capturing imagery that until now has been intangible
He interposes nothing between the medium and the light source. By all that is logical, Luc’s images should emerge as flat grey pieces of paper, but they do not. There is motion, contrast, mood and – amazingly often—a clearly defined image. A cat, a triad of faces evolving into dimensionality, a fish, a bird’s head, an ankh, a dancing man, even a word.
The prints without clearly defined images seem to capture an archetypal mood. One in particular radiates a peace that “just nestles people in and cradles the viewer with a sense of comfort,” explains Century. “
“This imagery resonates on a deeper level and there’s a familiarity within these flowing forms. Most people are drawn to this work but a few back off and are not interested in exploring it.”
Century speculates that there is something – perhaps a form of bio energy – that is reacting directly with the palette. Something is creating the contrast that defines the shape. “In some form or fashion the mind and or body is interactively producing subtle patterns merging with light and chemistry.”
His glass etching technique – one that he worked out by trial and error — utilizes a photographic mask that defines the area to be etched: experimenting with the mechanics of developing photographic images is not new to him. In 1981 when he was using his etching technique to inscribe the names on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC, he also began experimentations in discovering this new art form as seen in this show.
While the images are evocative of spiritual elements, Century prefers to regard them as art. “They are beautiful. They appear to me as art, very well-balanced in design and each one is totally unique. New layered forms appear when I shift focus and look at them from a fresh angle. At times I think I’m looking through a hologram seeing intriguing slices or views of worlds without boundaries.”