Karen Neill, featured ILCC liquid crystal artist, May 2011
After graduating in Fine Art at Byam Shaw Central St Martins, London, UK, where I studied fluid and the nature and influences of its movement through making my own projection, film and slides, I was overjoyed at being offered by Oleg Lavrentovich an Artist's Residency at the Liquid Crystal Institute in Kent, Ohio, USA. I spent three months in their laboratories watching the characteristics of the nature of the movement of liquid crystal. Of course as an artist I am interested in the aesthetics primarily and am concerned in the way the liquid moves and the millions of colours I can achieve through polarisation - these colours which are in our world but cannot be seen in normal light. It took a long time to get the results I achieved using a Nikon 20 camera and microscope with crossed polarisation to capture film and over 500 stills.
The Science Museum in London have expressed an interest in my work. I am desperate to continue my work but in a different way. I find it very difficult to locate the right conditions and equipment in an ideal world in my studio. If you read my Statement on my website (www.karenneill.com) you will see I was fortunate enough to win a couple of awards - with Novartis and Wellcome Trust for my work on my return in 2005 and 2008. I have recently been invited to apply for a global exhibition of scientific images by the British Photographic Society for their show in London in September I am hoping to be chosen to show my work.
A nematic liquid crystal texture - it is a film still. I have made a couple of videos of the moving liquid crystal. Taken with a Nikon 20 camera and microscope with crossed polarisers.