Spencer Finch is best known for ethereal light installations that visualise his experience of natural phenomena. His investigations into the nature of light, colour, memory and perception proceed in watercolours, drawings, video and photographs. Finch distills his observations of the world into glowing abstract colour but also diverts them through cultural and historical filters: in homage to Emily Dickinson’s 1862 poem Before I got my eye put out, he measured the sunlight in her Massachusetts garden then recreated the effect of a passing cloud by means of fluorescent tubes covered in gel and suspended theatre filters. He has painted the changing shades of grey on Sigmund Freud’s ceiling in Vienna, Austria, viewed from the psychoanalyst’s couch and later, in 102 Colors from My Dreams (2002), recorded the colours he saw in his sleep then colour-matched inks to make a sequence of Rorschach blots. Compelled by what he describes as ‘the impossible desire to see oneself seeing’, Finch holds up an enchanting prism between the outer world and inner thought.
Spencer Finch was born in New Haven, Connecticut, USA in 1962 and lives and works in Brooklyn, New York, USA. He has a BA in comparative literature from Hamilton College, Clinton, New York, USA (1985) and an MFA in sculpture from the Rhode Island School of Design, USA (1989). Solo exhibitions include ‘Lost Man Creek’, Public Art Fund, New York, NY, USA (2016); Marfa Contemporary, TX, USA (2014), Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indiana, USA (2013), the Art Institute of Chicago, USA (2011), Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, North Adams, USA (2007) and Portikus, Frankfurt am Main, Germany (2003). He participated in the Folkestone Triennial, UK (2011) and the 53rd Venice Biennale, Italy (2009). Public commissions include Crossrail, London, UK (2017), the Public Art Fund, New York, NY USA (2016), The High Line, New York, NY, USA (2008).
Current and recent projects: