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Lumia
seeing light as you've never seen it before
by
Louis M. Brill

lumia vista



What is this elemental force we call light? We see it all day, every day as it visually defines the world around us. Is not light a part of the fabric of life? When we are born, it is the first thing we see. At the end of days - it is the last thing we see as we travel onwards to an uncertain new destination.

While we cannot touch light, it touches us in many ways. It makes us happy on sunny days, it makes us fearful when it suddenly goes out. It gives us color and visually defines the form and shape of the world around us.

We see light in many forms; starting with the emerging dawn glow, at dusk which marks the coming evening, after rainstorms, the chromatic rainbow and in the northern latitudes,  the aurora borealis. Light is central and essential in our life and we conform our lives to how we see and use it.

Light has become my paintbrush, and I use it accordingly to illuminate and mystify by presenting its luminance in unique expressions. I see light as a plastic medium that can be shaped and molded into other forms as expressed by an artistic intent.

One example of this effort is my work with Lumia, a form of light that looks like textured smoke. Its imagery is often abstract and mysterious and exists both as a static light form or if animated, as a kinetic illumination with a life of its own. As a moving image, Lumia is sometimes thought of as an animated painting whose slow, precise movements morph between abstract phenomena or images of creatures vaguely reminiscent of the real world. In all these reflections there is a beauty to Lumia as it often appears as a visual gateway to another dimension; a world of photonic hill and dale, all waiting to be visited and explored.

Thomas Wilfred (1889 - 1968) the discoverer of Lumia as a creative medium defined it as the 8th fine art; for me Lumia is a mysterious art, as its sensual manipulated form can exist  as either a still image or as an animation. Often when music accompanies a Lumia in motion, the music gives the Lumia a certain vitality of presence, where both the music and the light merge into a synesthetic spectacle that can be endlessly experienced and enjoyed.

My challenge as a Lumia artist is to find and present that spectacle; to inspire others as it has inspired me.
Louis M. Brill
San Francisco, CA
February, 2014