Today, I had the opportunity to look at Luca Nino Antonucci’s work from his current show, COLLAPSE, at the Wire + Nail Gallery (San Francisco, CA) showing until August 21, 2011. The content of the show is based on light from 13.5 billion years ago. Using advanced photographic technology, which includes an infrared camera along with a multi object spectrometer indicating distance, Antonucci creates an array of paper based work that illuminates (pun intended) what the human eye is unable to see, perhaps, even fathom. The show is accompanied by a book project created in collaboration with Daniel R. Small called “First Light” that explains, in laymen’s terms, the process behind the art. The show itself is a great example of what can be done with photography when an artist uses it to create something seemingly unimaginable and enigmatic. Yes, you have to think about the work and not just look. It begs the viewer to wonder, which is the beauty behind the work. Although the viewer is well aware of light’s inevitable demise, there’s an amorous and sentimental feeling gleaned from the work.

My favorite pieces from COLLAPSE: The White Embossments of Star Clusters *sigh*

Learn more about Luca’s work by visiting his website here.

Recently, the Hubble Ultra-Deep Field imaging system unveiled the deepest portrait of the visible universe ever achieved by humankind, that reveals the first light from 13.5 billion years ago. The exposure lasted for eleven and a half days and is the as far back as the human eye has seen to the origins of the universe.

Collapse, Antonucci’s first solo show, addresses these awe-inspiring galactic portraits in a purist vocabulary imbued by the hand of the artist. With the topic of the photographic universe at the forefront of scientific observation and contemporary art making, this body of work seeks to re-contextualize Hubble’s image through an opaque lens, so as to re-negotiate the romantic notions of the viewer and subject matter itself. As an image presenting truth, the Hubble Ultra-Deep still evokes an undeniable mysticism, sense of wonder, and romance. In this investigation, Antonucci pays homage to the beauty held within the visual landscape of the cosmos while extracting a veritas all his own.

Antonucci received his MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute in May of 2010. During 2009 he completed a residency exploring video and printmaking in Berlin. His self-made book inspired by the Hubble Ulta-Deep Field images, First Light, was published this year by Conveyor Arts. Currently Antonucci is occupying a printmaking residency at the Kala Art Institute in Berkeley and he resides in San Francisco.

~ Press release from Wire and Nail Gallery Site

To learn more about Luca Nino Antonucci and his work, please click on the exhibition image above or click here.