Athan’s European Bakery & Café
617.734.7028 | 407 Washington Street, Brighton, MA 02135 | athansbakery.com| MBTA Buses 57, 65, 86, 501 & 503| 8 am-10 pm everyday| runs from April 12 – June 3, 2012: Dr. Regina Valluzzi: “Insight & Allusion” an exhibition of organic science-inspired paintings. The public opening reception is Sunday April 29 - 6-8 pm.
Dr. Regina Valluzzi
“Insight & Allusion”
Dr. Regina Valluzzi, Schlieren Chiarascuro, oil on linen, 12 x 12 inches, 2011
Artist: Dr. Regina Valluzzi
Opening Reception: Sunday April 29, 2012 – 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Artist Talkback - April 29 – 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm
407 Washington Street
Brighton, Massachusetts 02135
Hours: Everyday - 8:00 am - 10:00 pm
Enjoy a bright idea in Brighton this Spring. The Athan's Cafe and Bakery is hosting an exhibition of Science inspired art from April 12 through June 3. The exhibit features colorful and organic paintings by Dr. Regina Valluzzi, an artist with decades of research experience in the Physical and Biomedical Sciences. Independent curator John Quatrale has selected a group of engaging and intriguing original artworks for the exhibit.
Art can make Science more approachable. A painting can capture a technical concept, and make it both insightful and allusive. For the past three years, Valluzzi has increasingly explored art as a way to communicate scientific ideas. Many of the concepts encountered in the sciences are inherently abstract, and a creative painting captures and communicates different dimensions of these concepts. Valluzzi's abstracted paintings are vibrantly colorful. Her use of geometry, color, and pattern dances across the canvas. Many of the abstracted forms explore themes and ideas drawn from her experiences as a research scientist and science educator.
A small painting titled "Schlieren Chiarascuro" is a good example of how Valluzzi melds the two worlds of science and art in her paintings. In the painting, the dark lines and shaded colors suggest the appearance of a liquid crystal in polarized light, while details fancifully depict characteristic defect structures (disclinations) and patterns from a variety of liquid crystalline types. Liquid crystals are made of molecules that can line up like logs on a river, and when they do the liquid crystal will polarize light. The "schlieren" are dark lines where no light can pass through both the liquid crystal and the polarizer. Between the "schlieren" the liquid crystal is often brightly colored due to "birefringence". Birefringence creates a sort of chiarascuro of optical phenomena.
Valluzzi first realized that art had the potential to communicate scientific concepts while completing her undergraduate degrees in Materials Science and in Humanities at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. As part of her Materials Science degree she collaborated with Catherine Judge, an artist in the CAVS program. Under the Supervision of professor Michael Rubner, she helped deliver advanced polymer technology in a form that could be used by artists. She also completed a Minor in Visual Studies as part of her Humanities degree, which focused on Music Theory and Composition. While at MIT she organized two successful student art exhibits; a group show with undergraduates from her living group and a two-person show with Jerry McCarty, an MS candidate in the Center for Advanced Visual Studies.
During her PhD in Polymer Science and Engineering at University of Massachusetts Amherst, she began to intensively explore visual imagery as data. As a polymer morphology student working with professor Sam Gido, she spent much of her time working with advanced microscopes and visual data as well as developing graphics, figures and other forms of data visualization. These scientific visualization tools proved invaluable during her time as a Research Professor at Tufts University, where she trained, educated and assisted students through a variety of programs. She continued to create art through her PhD studies, and began to develop a quirky approach to creating art from scientific concepts. Ideas from scattering theory, fourier analysis, statistical thermodynamics and other technical topics began to subtly worm their way into her artwork.
However it was during her time as founder and Chief Scientific officer of a venture-backed nanotechnology company that Dr. Valluzzi fully realized the power of visualization and potential for Art to communicate complex technical concepts to a wide variety of people. Founding a start-up was a process of continuous communication, where complex and dry technological ideas had to be made accessible and exciting. After the start-up Valluzzi began working as a technical consultant, but found her time and focus increasingly were spent on art. A few experiments in openly and directly incorporating science content into art convinced her that her science experience could act as a rich source of continuing artistic inspiration. At the same time the insightful reactions of non-scientists to her art demonstrated the power of art to reach people and to communicate science in a manner that is approachable, engaging, and exciting.
"Insight & Allusion" is a tour of three years of Valluzzi's science-focused painting. Concepts ranging through nanotechnology, polymers, physics, chemistry, and biotechnology are melded with contemporary abstract painting approaches in these paintings. Dr. Valluzzi and curator John Quatrale are delighted to offer this unique exhibition.
John Quatrale, principal with ArchivalExhibitions.com, resides In Brighton, Massachusetts. He holds a master of arts from Boston University’s American and New England Studies Department. He also has museum studies post-graduate training through Harvard University's Museum Studies Program. Mr. Quatrale is a member of the American Association of Museums (AAM), the New England Museum Association (NEMA), the National Association of Museum Exhibitionists (NAME) and the AAM’s Curator’s Committee. He has planned, designed, curated and developed numerous fine art and historical exhibitions in local museums and galleries and served as the first Museum Director for the WaterWorks Museum in Chestnut Hill, MA.
Athan’s European Bakery & Cafe’, with locations in Brighton and Brookline, strives to provide patrons with the quintessential cultural café experience - steeped in artisan traditions, yet hip and modern; casual, yet elegant; always delicious. Whether it be a Parisian "boulangerie/patisserie", an Italian "patisserie", an eastern European "kaffehaus", or a Greek "zaharoplasteion", these temples of sweet escape are part of everyday life. Upon entering one of these venerable institutions, one is often struck by the charm of the interior, the convivial atmosphere, the compelling aromas, the noisy espresso machine, the myriad possibilities for indulgence...all this awaits the visitor now, as well.