Osaka Centre for Contemporary Art
Kaleidoscope:  A Crystalline Form in the Eye
Osaka Centre for Contemporary Art, Osaka, Japan, 2005.

Exhibition curated by Alan Johnston and Kaoru Matsumoto.
Franz Graf, Douglas Gordon, David Williams, Richard Wright, Adam Barker-Mill, Thomas Struth, Takashi Suzuki, Norman Shaw, Ragna Robertsdottir, Olafur Elliasson, Richard Tuttle, Sean Shanahan.

Publication: Alan Johnston & Kaoru Matsumoto (eds.), Kaleidoscope, Osaka Centre for Contemporary Art, 2005 (ISBN  4-90347-00-8).
E. Munday

‘It was Brewster's research on the construction of the lens of the eye, which confirmed the existence of an ordered fibrous arrangement of its parts. Most remarkably, modern students using a laser have scarcely improved on the data discovered by David Brewster so many years ago. It was characteristic of the man that Brewster "did not move with the times ... and eschewed theory, to a large extent equating it with speculation" (Cochran: New Scientist, December, 1981). When Fresnel in 1830 established the "wave or 'undulating' theory of light" [still accepted in our day), Sir David Brewster carefully avoided this explanation, and even omitted it altogether from his Treatise on Optics. It is regrettable that his great endowment to our present fund of knowledge still goes largely unnoticed. Even the Kaleidoscope, the optical toy, which has brought joy to generations of children, came from the hands of Brewster in 1816, but few know this. He named his invention from a combination of several Greek words, "kalos" (beautiful), "eidos" (form), and "scopos" (viewer). So Kaleidoscope means "beautiful form viewer"

Interview with Alan Johnston  – 15th November 2004
Logan Sisley
Extract :
LS: You were talking about science and play being quite close but it seems to me even more so now in the kind of public mind, with genetics; the idea of the scientist playing God.

AJ: Yes for example in today’s paper was “the God gene”. I am sure that Brewster, in his mission to sustain science within Christendom, was very much prone to that. It’s also interesting, in the context of the continuities between one aspect of science in this light, and the sceptical, like Hutton and I suppose Geddes who continued that post-Enlightenment scepticism. I mean the implications about what he does, in terms of faith, are not directly related to the Christian ethos. They are still very heavily laden with a Presbyterian notion of a unified theology or a participatory theology/democracy which was of course very evangelical in its secular/scientist way. But, I suppose we are beginning to stray a bit.
Osaka 2005
Osaka 2005 Osaka 2005 Osaka 2005 Osaka 2005 Osaka 2005
Osaka 2005