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Charles Ross explores the aesthetic properties of naturally occurring phenomena through activities such as charting the path of the sun, documenting the effects of sunlight through a prism, and creating an earthwork to form a space ideal for viewing constellations.
Sunlight Convergence/Solar Burn is an excerpt from a larger group of 366 panels that Ross made between the fall solstices of 1971 and 1972. Each day, Ross placed a wood panel under a Fresnel lens on the roof of his studio. The lines burnt into the board through the magnification of the sun’s rays document the weather on each day. Ross stated, “Passing clouds cause unburned interruptions. Bright sunlight leaves a broad smoke flare. Rainy or overcast days produce blank boards. The width and length of the burn varies with atmospheric conditions such as haze and smog.”