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Collection Focus: Light Play

April 10, 2024
12:00 am
October 6, 2024
11:55 pm
Collection Focus: Light Play


Flashing, neon, candle: these are a just a few forms of light that have a significant impact on the way we see the world. Throughout art history, light has been an important focal point across different mediums, from Caravaggio’s Renaissance canvases to Vivian Maier’s photographs. This exhibition explores some of the ways contemporary artists have engaged with light as medium.

Collection Focus is a series of exhibitions that draw from works that have been a part of MOCA’s permanent collection for decades and create new ways to engage with past and recent acquisitions. The first in the series, Light Play, presents works that range from John Espinosa’s installation Standing Still While We Move Across Land, which explores UV light as a metaphorical energy source, to Jo Nigohossian’s formalist sculptures, Steel and Neon Sprawl, which was inspired by the flashing neon of a Las Vegas hotel from her childhood. Together, these works from the collection tell a story of how light is used to shape and illuminate hidden ideas and forms. Collectively, they operate across realms of whimsy and spirituality, showcasing how artists spanning generations and methods of working have attempted to examine profound questions surrounding politics, subversion, and interpersonal connection.

This exhibition was curated by Adeze Wilford with Kimari Jackson.

Image Credit:
John Espinosa. Standing Still While Moving Across Land, 2004. Mixed media. Collection of the Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami. Gift of Mario Cader-Frech and Robert S. Wennett

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