As part of Edinburgh International Science Festival, How the Light Gets In, ASCUS presents BLACK LIGHT a work by Labern&Lloyd, the drawing Shed. Aptly situated in a shed in the central courtyard of Summerhall, be sure to check this work out as you wander through the wide range of art-science works and exhibitions, on display across Summerhall for the EISF this year.
Labern&Lloyd, the drawing shed
BLACK LIGHT is an on-going creative enquiry on the part of Labern&Lloyd, which purposefully uses the spectrum of light invisible to the human eye, Ultra Violet, the same light emitted at the beginning of the life of all stars, of all known biological life, bringing this into contemporary focus. BLACK LIGHT actively engages its audience in the work itself, illuminating critical information often obscured or hidden from the public gaze – historical, political, scientific, imaginative, poetic. During the UNESCO International Year of Light in 2015, BLACK LIGHT draws upon photonics as inspiration to rethink the hidden. This is in the context of technology which moves humanity fast forward into new worlds, and may appear to be only future-oriented, but in reality is bound up with the permanent crisis of contemporaneity.
Through the metaphor of BLACK LIGHT, the artists investigate emergent collective and imaginative threads of resistance – acts of civil disobedience, scientific cooperation and discovery – so as to explore how we hold agency or take responsibility for a new ‘civil society’. From UV exposure of human debris to the making visible of big ideas, the artists explore both individual and collective actions, experiments and explorations.
The audience activates the artwork through the wearing of black festival wristbands printed in UV ink, stepping into the white shed occupied by a single Black Light lamp. The shed is a deliberate site for this iteration of BLACK LIGHT in the Summerhall courtyard, holding as it does an ideological shadow of the personal, inventive, ambivalent, project space held at the bottom of the garden.
Visual artists Labern&Lloyd collaborate on projects and interventions in the ‘public’ realm, using diverse media and exploring preoccupations with the hidden, resilience and resistance. As lead artists of the drawing shed, they bring other artists and processes into the frame to develop and expand on these shared concerns. Their mobile studios act as an artist-led project resource for collaborations and form central platforms for the work which bridges in and out of durational projects on the drawing shed’s east London estates’ base. Both artists have worked and exhibited independently for over two decades in galleries, site specific and public settings in the UK and internationally.