Jacki’s work was inspired by the night sky at Cape Cornwall…..


“So the darkness shall be the light, and the stillness the dancing”

Eliot, T.S.,East Coker, Four Quartets

The desire to escape the harshness of reality frequently draws us towards a fictional world where we might allow ourselves to dream and be enchanted by mystery.  Artists entertain with their own forms of enchantment, by manipulating the picture plane and modelling three-dimensional forms, and performing compelling perceptual tricks that ‘fool the eye’.  Art and magic enlist similar strategies of illusion and deception in order to lead viewers to the transformative power of the imagination.

There is something strange and ‘uncanny’ about the images optical devices can create, where the observer willingly places himself in the dislocating yet oddly pleasurable situation of uncertainty as to where reality begins and ends. Knowledge stored from the past influences our predictive perceptions and combines with images received by the eye. Illusions are essentially phenomena of perception, generated when the eye and the brain are confused, becoming temporal and unstable.

‘Stargazer’ references a location of particular personal significance.  It attempts to convey something of the wonder of watching stars in the vast night skies at Cape Cornwall, a quiet promontory where the lack of light pollution at night seems to dramatically intensify their clarity and appears to draw them closer to the observer. ‘Stargazer’ also considers an antique concept whereby stars are seen as holes in the membrane of the sky.

No image as such is produced in ‘Stargazer’, as light is both subject and object.  It is presented in real time, providing an experience of perceptual ambiguity which is wholly dependent on the viewer’s active participation. On approaching from the side, the box appears completely solid, but on passing in front of it, this mass seems to dissolve into a shimmering impression of movement and instability as the viewer is confronted with thousands of tiny pinpricks of light.  Moving beyond the box, it once again appears to transforminto a solid mass and the magic vanishes. There is no fixity here, and the only certainty is change.

The work was exhibited at

Space Place Practice : Symposium,  UWE Bower Ashton Campus, Bristol