Staghorn Sumac + Argon Gas + UV Glass
This is the first fluorescent wood light sculpture ever created. This experimental project takes advantage of an esoteric property of only a few known wood species: Fluorescence under UV blacklight. Under UV, Staghorn Sumac, which rarely grows large enough to make a panel of this size (2' x 3'), glows in bright yellows, greens and blues with an occasional hint of purple.
Electricity excites argon gas molecules encapsulated in a specially coated glass tube (a solid/liquid hybrid) to emit radiation in the ultraviolet spectrum that excites molecules in the kiln-dried wood, causing them to glow in the visible spectrum.
The UV glass tube was bent in a way to suggest dripping, emphasizing the flexible boundary between material states. This video documents the first prototype tube, as realized by Shauna Peterson of Peterson Neon.