Immersive video, experimental photos and an installation, all all focused on the nearest star, are featured in “Good Luck with the Sun,” an exhibit by Krista Steinke, instructional assistant professor of visualization at Texas A&M, running April 28 – June 7 at Women and their Work Art Gallery, 1710 Lavaca St. in Austin.
The show, which opens with a 7 p.m. Saturday, April 28 reception, combines sun-based work created with experimental photographic methods including multiple exposures from homemade pinhole cameras, the creative use of handheld camera filters, and other techniques to produce multi-sensory images and videos that examine the sun’s physical and psychological impact.
“The work incorporates scientific imagery and personal narrative to create a multi-layered dialogue about our dual relationship with the sun; essential for life and a potential threat of doom and destruction,” Steinke said. “The work unveils visual and conceptual layers that collectively create a unique sensory portrait of the sun, while posing questions about our dependency on the natural world.”
The exhibition will include work from “Sun Notations,” a collection where the rising and setting sun was captured in extended exposures with pinhole cameras over the course of a year.
Her installation, “Eyes to the Sky,” reproduces a solar eclipse through various photographic media. Steinke shot the photos without looking through the viewfinder to avoid damaging her eyes, incorporating the images as an experiment in perception.
The exhibit’s centerpiece is an immersive video projection weaving together more than 50 animated still images from her “Sun Notations” collection.
“Clusters of dust appear like stars in the sky,” she said of the video. “The landscape morphs into abstraction, and the sun’s pathway moves across the screen like a drawing in space.”
The video will also be screened this June at the 2018 Current New Media Festival in Santa Fe.
Steinke earned bachelor’s degrees in art from The School of Art Institute of Chicago and Valparaiso University and a master’s degree in photography and digital imaging from the Maryland Institute College of Art. A lens-based artist, she works in photography, video and installation with a special emphasis in landscape, science and the environment.
Her work has been exhibited widely in the U.S. as well as internationally and is represented in major public and private collections including the Museum of Fine Art in Houston, Woodmere Museum, Brauer Museum of Art, Johnson & Johnson Corporation and Fidelity Investments.
Steinke’s awards include a Pennsylvania Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in photography, an Artist Residency at Light Work, a Howard Foundation Fellowship in photography and a 2012 Promise Award from the Sustainable Arts Foundation.
The video featured in Steinke’s exhibit was created with assistance from Annie Sungkajun and Ashley Lane, Texas A&M Master of Fine Art in Visualization students, and her brother, Matthew Steinke, an Austin-based musician.