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Last Wednesday I took my 5 year old to LAC’s (Lugano Art and Culture: http://www.luganolac.ch) to visit Anthony McCall’s exhibition “solid light works”. For the third time… My son keeps on begging to return and every time spends at least one hour running around and playing with light as happy as a child can be.

Anthony McCall (born 1946) has a cross-disciplinary practice in which film, sculpture, installation, drawing and performance overlap. McCall was a key figure in the avant-garde London Film-makers Co-operative in the 1970s and his earliest films are documents of outdoor performances that were notable for their minimal use of the elements, most notably fire. After moving to New York in 1973, McCall continued his fire performances and developed his Solid Light film series, conceiving the now-legendary Line Describing a Cone, in 1973. These works are simple projections that strikingly emphasise the sculptural qualities of a beam of light. At the end of the 1970s, McCall withdrew from making art. Over 20 years later, he acquired a new dynamic and re-opened his Solid Light series, this time using digital projectors rather than 16mm.

Then, the least I can say about Anthony McCall is that he’s a forerunner. Back in the ’70s he had already envisaged and put forward the topic of light, cinema, installation and interaction between artist and viewer. Actually I think this is the reason for my kid likes it so much: because by moving around in the dark, haze filled rooms he somehow contributes to shape the three dimensional space that McCall creates with expanding and contracting light beams intersecting each other creating the illusion of physical space changing around you (find a time-lapse video at http://thelatebloomerblogger.tumblr.com/post/131570692074/anthonymccall-solid-light-works-lugano). And also to me, who have hit my ’40s, it is very involving indeed… Kind of exciting actually since you really feel like a kid playing hide and seek in the dark surrounded by some impalpable spirits. In one of my visits I also bumped into a German couple kissing very very passionately. Then, if you happen to be in Lugano (or any of the cities currently hosting any McCall’s exhibitions. Check on http://www.anthonynccall.com), and particularly if you have one or more kids in tow (or it appears even your partner will do the job), my suggestion is that you spare the time to take a look. As far as me I already know I’ll be back for the fourth time by the end of the week.


“Solid Light Works” from September 12 bio notes http://www.serpentinegalleries.org,2015 to January 30,2016 #LAC #lugano #switzerland #exhibition #art #contemporary #culture #light #mccall #anthonymccall