Emil Lukas’ exquisitely strange and phenomenological objects are meditations on the way we perceive the world. “We’re affected by lots of things that are larger than us — things we don’t normally know how to see — for example the laws of physics,” says Lukas. “I’m attempting to make the invisible, visible.”
Labor-intensive and experimental, playful and poetic, surprising and delightful, Lukas’ sculptures and sculptural paintings grow out of investigations into gravity, perspective, mathematics, color theory and the properties of light.
Round “paintings” — actually parabolic bowls with tens of thousands of colored threads stretched across — manipulate our sense of space and definition of color. Chunky, plaster works composed of honeycombs of multi-colored pixels create optically vibrating fields, their convex surfaces disrupting our perception of depth. And the centerpiece of the exhibition, a monumental, pixilated, aluminum lens, both restricts and restructures our line of sight.
This exhibition is an examination of seeing, where optics — the study of sight and the behavior of light — is a metaphor for the human ability to derive insight from abstract concepts. “We have two eyes and they are set into our heads in a way that determines our reality — our perspective. Those notions of the way the world exists are what I’m trying to upend.”
Emil Lukas was born in Pittsburgh, PA. He has exhibited extensively internationally and has been collected by, among many others, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Anderson Collection. Lukas has been represented by Hosfelt Gallery since 2006. This is our sixth solo exhibition together.