Painting with light, the Wholeo dome

Painting with light, the Wholeo dome

‘I don’t remember,’ says artist Caroling (real name Caroline Geary). ‘when I first encountered the phrase, “stained glass is the ‘handmaiden’ of architecture”. The idea, which permeated the stained glass world, got stuck in my mind like a porcupine quill. After all, painting escaped servitude years ago. It finally dawned on me that glass needed not only to become portable, but also to become revolutionary.’


‘In 1967, after seven years of designing for studios, doing stained glass free-lance and for fun, I was profoundly dissatisfied with what I or anyone else had done in the medium. Stained glass might be a wonderful medium for colour, but what is colour? Colour is vibrations, the light from atoms and stars, a basic language, the stuff of communication! You can touch stained glass and the fingers receive communications. The colour shines into your eyes, penetrates the skin, and even colours up your shadows. The colours seem to float in a thick space. It is an unusual space.



‘What a great idea, I thought, to surround myself with this inside-out space. I wanted not to look at a window, but to be in a window. I needed control of all the light. I would make panels on the arcs around me. The radius of the arc was seven feet, the distance my fingers reached up while standing on tip-toe.’


ARTIST CAROLING COMMENTS: On a bright hot morning, movie-makers looked around in Wholeo Dome. Here are some favorite details: a feather stuck in easterly “Breathe In”, a spectrum cast by the old military tank prism in the south, etched panels leading westerly to “Death End”, spirals of the “Essence of Being” in the north. Clouds leading the eye afar, illuminating the textured glass membrane of the dome, while intense colors project into your cells. The rich sense of depth permeates the whole. Looking up, patterns entangle. Looking down, colored light reaches, bathes, and sinks into pebbles. Not only eyes but auras mingle.


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