You know how it is. There you are, exploring an abandoned mental asylum and picking up metalic shrapnel off the dusty ward floor, wondering what dust is when there is no human skin shedding into the air, and thinking how lucky you were to be given the chance to install in this sundrenched, ghostly room and that this was undoubtably the highlight of your week. Then the very next day you come across Ralf Kempken and suddenly real estate at the top of the week's podium gets very tight indeed.
I was in local shopfront gallery Oh Really yesterday afternoon with Punk Monks Clare, Alex, and Kaitlyn when I came across Ralf Kempken's optic nerve-tickling work for the first time. In his own words:
'The development of the screens are essentially an extension of the stencil. To me the stencil always appeared to be more than just a tool for reproduction and repetition. Inherent are also the ideas of the pattern, ie. the original model, plan or sample and the template. These are used for forming shapes, repetitively. My interest in the screens is based in the context of them being "templates of perception". But not in regard to sense perceptions in the eye. Optical art explores these ideas well and demonstrates how fallible our visual perception really is. My screens are to be thought of more as an internal process. On how we perceive our emotional and physical environments through screens of our own making. [read the rest here]
Now, usually I would try to find a picture of some of Ralf's similar work to give you a feel of what got me so hot and bothered. [oh, go on then...]
*lovingly pinched from Ralf's website. Go check it out, there's more!
But thanks to the wonders of modern technologists and FreshlyBakedGallery.com, you can actually check out the works virtually. You don't get the sweetly organic physical experience of your eyes adjusting to your position in the room, but you do get a pretty cool online gallery experience.