The shape of the invisible
Evelina Domnitch and Dmitry Gelfand’s artworks shed (acoustic) light on quantum phenomena
30 January 2017
Exploring the quantum dimension, where the tiniest portions of matter interact according to rules that have little in common with the way we experience the physical world, could expose artists to huge risks. “Instead of abandoning the senses because our perception is incompatible with the quantum world,” says Dmitry Gelfand. “We go against the grain to find the observable. We try to calibrate, to take the advantage of the elasticity of our perceptual processes, to tune in to these very odd, very counterintuitive behaviours.”
Evelina Domnitch and Dmitry Gelfand deal with vacuum, light, sound, and energy. In their , they use ultrasound in a vacuum space, to compress micro-bubbles of gas present in liquids, to the point that they collapse, reaching Sun-like temperatures, and emitting light in the shape of the sound that causes this light. “We’re exploring a slippery domain called mesoscopic, where quantum behaviour manifests itself on a macroscopic scale,” Domnitch explains.
In the project, they induce the acoustic levitation of a droplet of water, where the effect of gravity is minimized, bringing the droplet to what they define as “harmonic mode isolation”.
In Photonic Wind, a laser beam levitates and propels diamond micropowder. Together with Force Fields, the works were at the centre of the (Vacuum and Light) exhibition at the Lieu Unique contemporary arts centre in Nantes, France.