Women in Lighting

R.A.W: Tamar Frank

31 January 2020 // R.A.W

R.A.W: Tamar Frank

Above: Tamar Frank by Arthur Martin

“Light (day and artificial) are the carrier for leading and laying out focus points that emphasise elements specific to the environment.” 

This is the way the Dutch newspaper Utrechts Nieuwsblad introduces the work of light artist Tamar Frank, who has celebrated the 20th anniversary of her studio Lightspace with a retrospective book.

Her installations are made not only by Light but with the same essence of it, in fact while they are visible in public spaces mainly, they are temporary and visible for a limited time only, not just through a picture.


In Lucem, 2018, light panel (multiple series of 20)

The interrelation between artificial and natural, technology and ephemerality, is one key of reading Tamar's work.

Her own first artwork, a series of 20, a wall panel that slowly changes colour has the characteristic of the transitory essence of light.

Interlaced, 2016, Axeneo7 (part of the Textile Triennale) Gatineau, Canada
Interlaced, 2016, Axeneo7 (part of the Textile Triennale) Gatineau, Canada

Tamar Frank responds to the environment, the surroundings and to the architecture by integrating her work to it creating in situ perceptions of belonging.

The outdoor installations have to wait for the sun to set, in order to let specific chosen sources to light up. An example is the work of Lampyris Noctiluca a work which reflects the life and motion of fireflies.

Lampyris Noctiluca for Into the Great Wide Open in Vlieland
Lampyris Noctiluca
for Into the Great Wide Open in Vlieland

This installation consists of 500 tiny LED lights, developed for Glow Eindhoven in 2012 and later installed at various locations: a forest lake in Vlieland, the botanical gardens in Amsterdam and Ljubljana.

Even though everything gets tailored to each specific site, as per what happens in nature, the light of Tamar Frank is always adapting and re-transforming itself and this work is the best example for it: instead of mounting the lights between the reeds they were to be mounted between the seats of the ‘grande salle’ of the historic opera house of Paris.

Tamar Franka at work at Paris Opera in Palais Garnier
Tamar Franka at work at Paris Opera in Palais Garnier

Everything was installed, filmed, photographed and dismantled within one day and one night.

A work of precision and detail that would surely create that “wow effect” that it is easier to relate to a sunrise scenario or a purple-pink sky after a day of rain.

The importance of light art in these days of fast life pace is fundamental to give ourselves the chance to be fascinated and, why not, to get in tune back with our deepest natural roots.

R.A.W Blogger
Martina Frattura