Meta Gallery

Dean Chamberlain: Light Paintings


Toronto, Canada, October 9, 2008–Meta Gallery is pleased to present Light Paintings, the first Canadian solo exhibition of acclaimed photographer Dean Chamberlain. Exploring the medium of photography using a highly original technique, which includes radically extended exposure times (up to 5 hours), the artist “paints” the light onto each element in the frame, methodically and delicately illuminating the composition inch by inch. Using a variety of light sources and an extensive palette of colors, Chamberlain creates deeply luminous yet mysterious documents of the human experience.

Seeing one of Dean’s works, the viewer is instantly confronted with how frequently we take for granted the light in our everyday lives, not to mention its role in traditional photography. After all, how else would one make a photograph without at least a minimal amount of available light in the environment? One look at the works in this show and it becomes clear–there are other ways.

While Chamberlain paints with light through time and space, the light itself becomes the primary subject matter, shifting the focus from the subject/object to the very element through which the work (and our lives) are revealed.

Dean Chamberlain was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1954 and currently lives and works in Venice, California. He began making photographs in 1967, and his passion for photography led to a degree in Fine Art from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 1977. He discovered his light painting technique while at R.I.T. and has been using it exclusively in his work ever since. He has made photographs of notables including David Bowie, Paul McCartney, Jeff Koons and Francesco Clemente, and his work has appeared in publications such as Esquire, Vanity Fair and the Washington Post. He received an MTV breakthrough award for directing music videos for Arcadia (Missing), Paul McCartney (This One) and Duran Duran (All She Wants Is) and has served as artist-in-residence at Dartmouth College as well as guest lecturer at The Art Institute of Chicago. In addition, he has conducted workshops on the technique of light painting at several prestigious institutions such as University of Southern California, The School of Visual Arts (New York, NY), The University of Minnesota and the Southeast Museum of Photography (Daytona Beach, FL).

This exhibition will feature 16 works executed between 1980 and 2001. Light Paintings will be on view from October 17 to November 23, 2008. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 11am-6pm and Sunday from 12pm-5pm. Opening reception is on Friday October 17. Artist in attendance.

For additional information please contact Dorian Richard Batycka at 905.979.5528 or email .

Download press release as PDF