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Magenta Exhibition

  • Niehoff Urban Studio 2728 Vine St Cincinnati, OH, 45217 United States (map)

Event: Modern Makers/ Magenta: Exhibition

Group Exhibition - Magenta
Magenta: Extra Spectral Magic

Magenta is to color as artists are to society--naturally integral yet often misunderstood and under-appreciated.  While magenta is one of four primary inks used to print almost all of the printed material in the world the color has yet to secure the same kind of acceptance and notoriety as the traditional primaries red, blue and yellow.  

The color Magenta cannot be found in Newton's R.O.Y.G.B.I.V. color spectrum.  Nor can magenta be found on a traditional color wheel.  While Magenta has always occurred in nature, it was not until 1859 that the color was commodified as a dye and named after the Battle of Magenta, a battle between the Sardinian and French armies that occurred in the Italian city Magenta.  Since then the color has proven to be essential in mechanical color printing technology (the M in CMYK) and is a natural secondary in the additive system that powers our computer and smart phone screens (between Red and Blue in RGB).

For most people, magenta is the brightest color.  Magenta appears so bright not necessarily because it contains more light, but because in order to perceive magenta two sets of cones in the human eye must fire at once: both the red-green and blue-violet light receptors.  Seen in this light, Magenta is not a color exactly; it’s a physiological phenomenon--magenta is only perceived psychologically by humans when pure red and blue light mix while green light is completely absent.  Unlike other bright colors yellow and cyan, which fall within the rainbow of the familiar visible spectrum, perceiving magenta requires wavelengths from two separate areas of the spectrum.  

This exhibition celebrates the vibrant history, technological function and cultural associations of this magnificent color Magenta, as interpreted by nine area artists, Joe Hedges, Jiemei Lin, Jacob Lynn, Philip Lavelle, Christy Wittmer, Anastasiya Yatsuk, Jesse Fox, and Lindsey Sahlin.

Date: July 11

Location: Niehoff Studio


Earlier Event: July 2
Modern Makers: Life Drawing
Later Event: August 29
Movement x 3