Light Play

Jan 23, 2023 - Jun 25, 2023

Light Play is an exhibition taken from the Museum’s permanent collection that explores the themes of light and play in art. The artists in this show explore the various meanings of “light” and “play” through their media, expression, and form choices. These artworks transmit feelings of joy, whimsy, and wonder in both subtle and distinct ways.

These galleries feature works by over thirty artists, including Afruz Amighi, Kumi Yamashita, and Harry Anderson, who incorporate light and shadows as a part of their art. Meanwhile, artists like Tayeba Begum Lipi, Kerry James Marshall, and Demond Melancon use the opulent effects of light interacting with shine and glitter to invite viewers into a serious dialogue. Debra Riffe’s prints from the series walk, in the direction you goin’ in tell a powerful story using silhouette forms, and the photographs of Chester Higgins, Manuel Álvarez Bravo, and Jerry Uelsmann creatively capture the playful whimsy of their subjects. John Bankston, Amir H. Fallah, and David Shrobe use color and lightheartedness to tell complex stories in their art.

Together, these works reflect an expanse of contemporary artworks incorporating light and play. Whether using it literally or conceptually, each artist employs light’s profound influence or captures a playfulness that lights up the room.

Amir H Fallah Iranian American born 1979 Portal to the East acrylic and colored pencil on panel 2016 Collection of the Art Fund Inc at the Birmingham Museum of Art Gift of Jack and Rebecca Drake AFI72022 © Amir H Fallah