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Oakes Twins Collection
Realistic ink drawing on concave paper, 2009–2016
Ryan & Trevor Oakes (US)
While analysing human vision, twins Ryan and Trevor Oakes noticed that when looking beyond a foreground object to the distance, a person’s two eyes split the near object into a transparent double image of itself. With this optical phenomenon, they invented a drawing technique. To acknowledge the fanned-out formation of light rays human eyes see, they construct curved paper and support it with a concave easel. To draw, they split their pen into a double image simply by looking past it. Holding the pen’s left image to the right edge of the curved drawing paper, the pen’s right image will hover in mid-air beyond the paper’s edge. The hovering pen may then trace over the distant scene, thereby simultaneously marking the scene’s proportions onto the paper.
By contrast to many artworks that render the world and human vision as flat, the Oakes Twins’ art corresponds to the natural curvature of the human eye, and their position as viewers at the centre of a sphere of visual experience.
Their artworks shown in SEEING include Have No Narrow Perspectives: Field Museum (black line period), Ocean Horizon Line 2: Pacific Coast Highway, Los Angeles, CA (colour period), Evergreen Cemetery in Late Winter (swirlism period), Bond Street Terrace (ripples period), and a brand new piece Ryan and Trevor will work on during the show.
Ryan and Trevor Oakes are twin brothers from New York who have been engaged in a conversation about the nuances of vision since they were children. They explored their mutual fascination with vision throughout grade school and during college at Cooper Union’s School of Art in New York City. Since graduating in 2004, they’ve continued their dialogue with jointly built artworks addressing human vision, light, perception, and the experience of space and depth. Ryan and Trevor have artwork in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art and the New York Public Library in New York City, The Field Museum and the Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership Museum in Chicago, and the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles.
Science Gallery Dublin is part of the Global Science Gallery Network pioneered by Trinity College Dublin