Imitating Water: Liquid Light by Tanya Clarke

When flipping a switch brings light and turning the tap brings water, nature becomes remote. How can art change this?


Tanya Clarke’s Liquid Light Series is an ongoing collection of unusual lighting fixtures fashioned from repurposed plumbing parts, glass hand-sculpted into the shape of water droplets, and low voltage LED lighting. Some are embellished with other repurposed touches, such as a piece of driftwood, a gauge, or extra hardware converted into small planters. You can see the full array of her creations on her website.


The daughter of prominent environmental activist Tony Clarke, Tanya grew up with a privileged awareness of the value and fragility of nature. She seeks to communicate this awareness not through public speaking, but by moving others through art that is both beautiful and functional. The style is quirky–industrial meets artistic with a deep streak of steampunk. Her pieces, which include wall, ceiling, floor and table lamps, have been hung in museums and private homes. Rest assured this kind of custom work costs a pretty penny, but a portion of each sale goes to water research and conservation.

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Liquid Light combines design and sculpting with craft and construction skills. Our attention is drawn not only to the ingenious use of recycled hardware, but to nature which is so elegantly imitated. When ever the tap is turned and the light comes on, one remembers the precious gift of water, so scarce today in the state of California where Tanya makes her home.

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Mindfulness is never wasted, especially when it involves something so delightful to the eye.




Images © Tanya Clarke used in accordance with Fair Use Policy for educational and analytical purposes.

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