We as living beings cannot live without the presence of light. It is essential to our very existence.
Art challenges our minds to see things in new ways. It is an inspiration and representation of the complexity of life and of our own existence. It is generally agreed that art relates to feeling the way science relates to thinking. I believe that art can be made even more beneficial with the addition of the science of light.
If we combine our living need for light and the stimulating properties of art and make the result accessible on a regular basis we enrich our minds while simultaneously fostering positive emotional responses.
This was the catalyst to incorporate phototherapy within my work.
Starting with The Halo Project, I hope to make art that gives rise to emotional effects on an evocative and tangible level.
The effect that light has on mood and the brain itself is enormous.
Studying the effects of light on seasonal depression can help to develop a style of art that was not only pleasing to the eye but also emotionally and physically beneficial.
The project employs multiple sources of full-spectrum SAD lights directed through blue and white. On the average most people think about 300 to 1000 words of thought per minute and can see 10 million shades of color. By sitting in close proximity to the lights placed in my piece the viewer can leave words behind and experience calm while bathed in light of a soothing blue colour.
The full spectrum photo-therapeutic lights installed in the large freestanding booth will trigger a calming response while at the same time helping to reset circadian rhythms. Just as gazing into a reflecting pool provides a doorway to self-reflection, this piece will change the viewer into a participant and will encourage a connection and greater assimilation of therapeutic light.
We can help people form the habit of emotional cycles in the absence of physical cycles with the aid of light and art. Using a lighted piece of art at the same time each day for a set amount of time, “muscle memory” can be applied to emotions so that eventually we would have greater control over our consciousness. The contribution of therapeutic art to the well being of individuals will be immeasurable.
Front, Side and Back View of
"The Halo Project" Blair Martin Cahill, 2013. Light, Metal, wood and plastic.
Booth: 1.82 meters high X .91 meters wide. Bench: 76 cm long