When Worlds Collide: The Interaction of Art and Chemistry
A collection of works from Nancy O. Albert, Meg Green Malvasi, and Leigh B. Williams
On view January 10 – March 14, 2019
At first glance, it may seem that the relationship of chemistry to art could not be further apart. But in art, chemistry is desired, even necessary, for creation and expression. While not all chemists are artists, it can be said that all artists are chemists in their pursuit through experimentation and study of various materials—whether paint, photographic film, metal, glass, or clay.
Three artists—photographers Nancy O. Albert and Meg Greene Malvasi, and painter Leigh Williams—employing different approaches, address the idea of chemistry and art.
Each artist explores the idea of chemistry as both a literal and symbolic process in her body of work. Nancy Albert’s digital photographic images focus on the interaction of nature’s processes with urban and industrial structures. Meg Greene Malvasi submerges Polaroid images into tubs of water and other chemicals, to create corroded-like images rearranging color, light, and shapes. Leigh Williams’ works draw on the interaction of alcohol inks and acrylics with a variety of substrates. Active experimentation, resulting reactions, and creative controls all contribute to each artist’s process.
Personal chemistry too, plays a role. Working with each other, the artists combine their own energies and vision to the idea of chemistry and art. The end result is a collection of work showcasing how chemical compositions, creative processes, and the interactions of people come together to create art.