Photo: Liz West in Manchester, North West

Liz West


Liz West creates vivid environments that mix luminous colour and radiant light. Working across a variety of mediums, West aims to provoke a heightened sensory awareness in the viewer through her works. She is interested in exploring how sensory phenomena can invoke psychological and physical responses that tap into our own deeply entrenched relationships to colour.

West's investigation into the relationship between colour and light is often realised through an engagement between materiality and a given site.

Within physical and architectural space, West uses light as a material that radiates outside of its boundaries and containers. She playfully refracts light through using translucent, transparent or reflective materials, directing the flow of artificial light. Our understanding of colour can only be realised through the presence of light. By playing and adjusting colour, West brings out the intensity and composition of her spatial arrangements.

These ephemeral interventions forge new spaces and environments, from flooding a physical site with a rich mixture of light to using colour to disrupt the white flatness of paper.

West revels in experimentation. Surrounding herself with an array of materials, she utilizes both her studio and the sites that she exhibits as test beds for a process of experimentation. Objects are ordered and classified. Series of works are created and reproduced in different 'mixes'. Patterns are tested and repeated. This fast paced development of ideas is well documented by West, who often uses photographs to shape the direction of her sculptures and installations. These images are like studies: they suggest ideas for more developed works but are intimate works in their own right. Photography allows her to quickly create multiple and sequential colour arrangements. This process is rooted in West's long-standing relationship with collecting and cataloguing.

These studies have led to the development of works that saturate a space with a single colour. By limiting her use of materials, West simultaneously challenges herself to focus on arrangements rather than an array of colours. In a recent series of spatial light works based on research into colour theory and light fields she has transformed architectural spaces.

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Location Manchester, North West
Activities Practice-based research, Residencies, Workshops, Built environment, Participatory projects, Public art, Private commissions
Artforms / type of project Project, Drawing, Installation, Mixed Media, Public Art
Tags Colour, Site-specific, Manchester, Rogue Artists' Studios, Saturate, Environment, Sensory, Experience, Colour Theory, Responsive

News & Events

  • Fluorescent - Soho Open House Arts Festival

    04/07/2015 – 05/07/2015
    Zero One, London

    Fluorescent brings artists and businesses together to create a platform for contemporary art work to be displayed in the workplace. Liz West will be showing new work as part of this years festival.

    Find out more

  • Awarded Commission for National Media Museum

    Liz West has been commissioned by the Museum to create a brand new £30,000 light installation celebrating UNESCO's International Year of Light for Light Fantastic exhibition.

  • Light Fantastic

    18/07/2015 – 01/11/2015
    National Media Museum, Bradford

    An Additive Miz -Discover the magical power of light in our brand new installation by artist Liz West. Spark your imagination and senses as you surround yourself in luminous colour and radiant light.

    Find out more