The Physicist, oil on stretched Japaneses paper, 45 x 20 cm.

The Physicist, oil on stretched Japaneses paper, 45 x 20 cm.

We live in a world of worlds, many of which we will never experience directly, for they are too extreme. Some may be nearby like the atoms in the table top or the sunlight on our faces. Others are separated from us by vast distances or times. The only way to reach these worlds is through the careful observation and imagination we call science.  Our discoveries are always beyond our initial imaginings and offer us rich perspectives on the world and ourselves.

We invest great resources and creativity in exploration and this is understandable for the thrill of discovery is overwhelming. For good reasons our findings are reported in a particular way by scientists for scientists who by their nature move onto the next thing quickly. Yet, there is a world of opportunity: to find new ways to talk about things we cannot experience with our senses; an opportunity to bring abstracted findings from remotely sensed worlds to this one and to write them large with colour and feeling.   In this way we may create brand new viewpoints, connections and expand the space in our minds.

This manifesto proposes an entire field of art working to the following principles:

  • Curiosity driven – works come about as a result of a genuine attempt to understand some aspect of Nature.  There is also a driving curiosity seeking to discover the ideal form of expression.
  • Organisation & clarity – each work is based upon careful analysis and deep understanding. Art will be used to analyse, organise and explain.
  • Generosity – the motivation is to give pleasure and offer understanding without being didactic.
  • Optimism – the works are about discovery which is a hopeful activity and they celebrate what we know. Their disposition will be optimistic for well-placed optimism can be irresistible and powerful; inspiring and bringing a freshness and freedom.
  • Resonance – the form e.g. colour, size, design, material, will echo the ideas.
  • Space – there is space for the mind to travel and a layering of ideas, so that the viewer can make associations and see metaphors.
  • Economy – nothing more is required and yet nothing can be taken out.
  • Beauty – works will delight the viewer and lift the spirits.
  • Self-contained - the artwork must stand alone regardless of the scientific idea.
  • Tactility – make abstract ideas tactile, through colour, texture and form.
  • Universal – identify themes that run through worlds, for these offer clues to the character of nature and our understanding.
  • Aspires to be unique – because of the emphasis on expressing well defined though relatively unexpressed ideas, to arrive at images not previously imaginable, which avoid derivatives.
  • For everyone - the fruits will be for everyone: offering new perspectives; bringing new ideas into everyday life; opening windows. They will picture our understanding - its reach, limitations and correspondences. They will help create space for the mind to travel. 

Breadth - the scope is focused on, though not constrained by physics; and considers the entire body of physics, without preference for the latest work.

- Geraldine Cox, January 15th 2016