Blog & News - Austine - Polarized Light Art

Posted on: August 6th, 2016 by Erika Wood

Austine at the Opening, Polage Art Exhibit

“Mastering the Mysteries of Light”

Springs Preserve, Las Vegas on view through Sept 18, 2016

Interview with Austine and look at her exhibit of Polage Art entitled “Mastering the Mysteries of Light” at Springs Preserve in Las Vegas. The show is being presented in conjunction with a major touring exhibition called “Playing with Light”.

The exhibit of Austine’s Polage® Art is both a retrospective and a show of new works.

“Mastering the Mysteries of Light” will be on view at the Springs Preserve until Sept. 17th 2016. Video by Paul Bean of Joshua Tree Productions and the Springs Preserve in Las Vegas.

Learn more about the “Playing with Light” exhibition and plan your visit to Springs Preserve:

And be sure to visit us at to learn more about Polage art, the artist Austine Wood-Comarow, inventor of the art form, and even learn a little about the physics behind the magic.

Posted on: July 1st, 2016 by Erika Wood

“Mastering the Mysteries of Light”

Polage® Art Exhibit

Springs Preserve, July 15—Sept 18

A Day in the Desert

A Day in the Desert, 30″

More and more, I find the day’s news drives me to seek some refuge. In my art I turn away from harsh and confusing events of the world, toward beauty and understanding. Ever since studying art in the 1960’s, I have made art that rebels against the ugly and the profane. Back then, aesthetically pleasing and realistic art was not in fashion. Artists were encouraged to create abstract expressionist or political art, and the more cacophonous and harsh the result, the more highly valued it seemed to be.

A Day in the Desert

A Day in the Desert, 30″

But I never felt fulfilled by adding to the din of discontent in the world. I have always been drawn to beauty in the natural world and to the beauty in our scientific understanding of it. That love for discovering the mysteries of the universe drew me to experiment with materials and techniques in my art that no one else had fully explored. This dichotomy of interests made me realize that using modern technology to nourish the fundamental human need for comfort and joy is, in fact, a kind of parable that can teach us that technology should be used for the good of the earth and all those that live on it.



Without a doubt, the biggest mystery to me is the fundamental nature of light. That is why I was so pleased to be invited by the Springs Preserve in Las Vegas to show my work in conjunction with a major touring interactive exhibit titled “Playing with Light.” I will be showing some of my earliest art works from when I first started experimenting with polarized light, as well as some of my most recent works. Some of my polarized light art pieces are interactive, literally allowing visitors to “play” with light.


Tapestry, 16 panel Liquid Crystal Polage

Some will continually change on their own. One special piece entitled “Into the Garden” will look completely blank with a kind of window suspended in front of it. Looking through that window will not only magically reveal the colorful imagery in the art, it will cause it to change without any moving parts.

My hope is that when you leave you will share the awe I have for the mysteries of light and the hopefulness I have for humankind.

The show will be open to the public July 15 through September 17 in the Big Springs Gallery at the Springs Preserve, 333 S. Valley View Blvd., Las Vegas, NV 89107.


Posted on: May 9th, 2016 by Erika Wood

Austine at Work on a Commission for the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts

 Polage® Art for the Montgomery, AL Museum of Fine Arts

In 2012, the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts commissioned Austine to create an interpretation of a large painting in their collection called Cazador de Nubes by Edgar Soberon. This is the second “interpretation” Austine has created for the MMFA. 

The video above shows Austine working on that commission, and is a great look at the behind-the-scenes work that goes on in making a Piece of her artwork. Before the work you’re seeing here, of course, comes a crucial part of the process in making the drawing “plans” for the Polage work. Even for an homage such as this one, her medium and methods are so very different from painting with pigment, she cuts every separate color from clear cellulose, so that an image has to be conceived and designed in shapes, smaller and smaller shapes for shading and tone. It is a painstaking process, but it’s rewarding in the end.

click the image to page through a slideshow of views of the finished piece

Click here to see a list of other Commissions, Installations and other artworks in Public View.

Posted on: December 21st, 2015 by Erika Wood

Interactive Polage Art

Polage® Art in the Lahaina Offices of Maui Jim SunglassesPolage Art in the Lahaina Offices of Maui Jim Sunglasses

My work is always an act of discovery, both for me and viewers of my artwork. In a sense, my work is completed by those participating in it. That is why, for me, my most rewarding works are the interactive pieces I have created for clients like Maui Jim, Inc., science museums and nature visitor centers. All of these works are themselves metaphors for discovery. They are mostly or totally invisible to the unaided eye. But when viewed through polarized sunglasses or polarizing filter viewers, they spring to life. That moment of discovery, when confronted with a truly new experience, the creation of the work becomes a shared experience.

Polage® Art in the Lahaina Offices of Maui Jim Sunglasses
Spring Mountain Visitor’s Center Polage Art Mural

Posted on: November 5th, 2015 by Erika Wood

Recent Commission

Over the past few months I have been working with wonderful clients, the Hubers, to create a special commission for their house. Dan Huber is a musician and wanted to express the fun and joy of playing in a live venue. I experimented with ways to depict a ballroom mirrored ball to capture the party atmosphere. Once I worked that out, I filled out the scene with partyers and then overlaid an image of Dan playing his saxophone.

David created a one-of-kind LCD device that not only lights the piece, but causes it to change continually without using any moving parts. David had to devise a way to join a number of individual LCD panels to make one larger piece.  And it worked! Now it is proudly displayed in the Huber’s living room! Thanks so much, Dan and Debbie for trusting me to create this special piece for you!

Stay tuned for the next big project.