Sunday, June 21, 2009
some random thoughts on the colour red ...
The last colour I looked at was violet, made up of the shortest wavelengths of light discernible to the human eye. So now it’s red, made up of the longest wavelengths the human eye can see.
If the wavelengths got any longer they’d be infra-red, ‘visible’ to (some) snakes, the military and art restorers ... (Although the military and art restorers do need some extra help, the snakes are just naturally gifted). Above is an infra-red image of a Zebra showing hotter areas (red) and cooler areas (blue). I'm a bit concerned about its off-fore (or right foreleg, for the non-horsey reader).
The symbolism of the colour red? Red has a complicated symbolism that switches between war / retribution / violence, and marriage / fertility / cyclic decline and renewal. Rosetti’s famous image of Proserpine with her pomegranate suggests the more carnal elements of the colour red, while Kuzma’s image ‘Bathing the Red Horse’ (1912) suggests revolutionary change.
Of course, there's probably as many meanings of the colour red as there are artists!
see more of Steve Lowe's infra-red images at the London Zoo site
see my post on (red) poppies at my fiction site
wikipedia has quite a good entry on red