Lucy Pullen: The Cloud Chamber and Related Works
Image 1 / 4: Lucy Pullen. The Effect Effect.
Image 2 / 4: Lucy Pullen: The Cloud Chamber and Related Works. (installation view).
Image 3 / 4: Lucy Pullen: The Cloud Chamber and Related Works. (installation view).
Image 4 / 4: Lucy Pullen: The Cloud Chamber and Related Works. (installation view).
Lucy Pullen situates her work in the unexpected terrain opened up when the disciplines of visual art, philosophy, and physical science meet. Working with engineers and astrophysicists, Pullen created two new sculptures to act as detectors that present cosmic rays as they pass through our earthly environments. Each geometrically specific chamber contains a distinct atmospheric condition. When a cosmic ray passes through The Cloud Chamber a contrail is formed. When a cosmic ray passes through The Spark Chamber, a spark ignites. Exhibited alongside the chambers are drawings and paintings of landscapes, in which the intentionally limited palette emphasizes light and shadow to create form. The juxtaposition allows Pullen to “make analogies” as she says between ‘dark’ matter and a shadow, aesthetic and quantum events, and a cosmic and an aesthetic mark.
As the artist describes, “cosmic rays are appealing because they are the only truly random thing in the universe. What quantum physics brings to philosophy is the notion of randomness – a principle typically explored by artists. In terms of my own artistic trajectory, the cosmic ray is the new super‐ball.”