Porta Romana welcomed acclaimed interdisciplinary artist, Jordan Soderberg Mills to outline how he has worked with light, and its distortion, as part of The Superyacht Design Forum.

Soderberg Mills is an artist of world renown, respected for his series of ‘anaglyphs’, glass works based on an illusion that creates a three-dimensional form from a flat image using tricks of colour, light and optical perception.

The works create heavily distorted, and technicoloured images, which although seemingly digitally edited, are actually generated entirely naturally, via analogue methods of distorting glass. He has recently completed projects for The Power Plant, AGO, The Design Exchange and Frame Magazine at Salone del Mobile in Milan.

One of his current projects is to explore the effect of chromatics on water, which on the evidence of the images above, would be nothing short of spectacular. “Anthropologists believe that we are drawn to the shimmer of light, due to the instinctual search for water; so this is really tied into our sense of survival”, he explained. “In our minds, these two things – light and water – are fundamentally linked and they’re associated with a sense of peace and wellbeing, and equilibrium. So, I wanted to explore how light and water can interact and work in concert to create stunning effects.”

Having envisioned the compelling effects himself with his own swimming pool, Soderberg Mills compares this to “diving into a giant rainbow”, which one can quickly imagine being very popular on the aft decks of superyachts.

“I know there’s a different set of expectations [on superyachts] for security and stability. Glass needs to be stronger.” This isn’t a problem for Soderberg Mills’ work because he is extremely well versed in working with structural glass, which led this journalist to wonder, out loud, whether his incredible chromatics could ever be incorporated into underwater viewing platforms, or lower deck portholes.

“For me, it’s about elevating that experience. How can I subvert your expectations of the space and your sense? Fine art really contributes to the beauty of a situation, and I think [a superyacht] would be a good setting [for his work].”



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