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N is for Neon Spreading Illusion: A to Z Challenge 2014

atoz [2014] - BANNER - 910

Blue Neon Madonna in Dunmore, PA. Photo by Margaret Almon
Blue Neon Madonna in Dunmore, PA. Photo by Margaret Almon

The first time we witnessed the Blue Neon Madonna(not her real name), Stratoz and I were startled.  She has a blue mantle of other-worldliness.  Another favorite neon was Electronic Superhighway by Nam June Paik.

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Electronic Superhighway: Continental U.S., Nam June Paik, 1995, 49-channel closed circuit video installation, neon, steel and electronic components, approx. 15 x 40 x 4 ft., Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the artist, 2002.23. Photo by Wayne Stratz.
Ehrenstein Color Figure
Ehrenstein Color Figure via Andy Parkinson.

 

Neon signs combine glass tubes with inert gases and electrification to create a gorgeous glow.  I love neon signs, but neon paint never appealed to me, and in investigating what makes a color “neon,” I discovered that it’s the addition of substances that show up under UV or black light.  The paint will reflect back more light than expected.  I also discovered the illusion of neon color spreading, where colored lines in the midst of black lines take on a glow like a neon sign.

Neon Color Circle
Neon Color Circle via blebspot.

 

 

 

 

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