Jody Rasch is a New York-area artist whose work uses themes drawn from science−such as astronomy, biology, physics and spectra−to make us consider the world around us. Rasch uses the scientific images from radio astronomy, electron microscopy, particle accelerators and individual element’s spectrum, and their underlying patterns, to explore the fundamental patterns in the larger world and to look beyond what we see and explore what is behind our conceptions. Rasch works with color and design to create art that is both representational and abstract. The scale of the actual images contrasts with the size of the artwork: the biological and physics images are massively enlarged and the astronomical images are equally drastically reduced. The goal is to bring the images to a more human scale so that the viewer can relate to the real elements that make up our world and universe. The artist incorporates gold in many of his works. This is drawn from medieval paintings in which artists painted religious figures with gold halos or utilized a gold background. For Rasch, the gold symbolizes science taking over from religion as the explanation for why things are the way they are.
Rasch is a self-taught artist, but has studied at the Arts Students’ League of New York and The School of Visual Arts in New York and has been exhibiting for over 30 years in both solo and group shows. Recent museum exhibitions include a two-person show at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Washington DC (November 2, 2018-February 1, 2019) entitled Duality: Art + Science and The World Unseen: Intersections of Art and Science at the David J. Sencer CDC Museum in Association with the Smithsonian Institution (May 20-August 30, 2019), which includes several works on paper. Rasch’s work is in private and corporate collections, including the Pfizer Corporation in New York and Colonial Penn Insurance Company in Philadelphia.
“Duality–abstraction and representation, the literal and the metaphorical, science and mysticism, the unseen and the seen–is a predominant theme in my work. There are multiple dimensions I am trying to communicate, but mostly I want the observer to begin to question what they believe. For me, the exploration of the concepts behind the work is the most interesting. It allows me to question my beliefs and not to pre-judge based on what we see, but to look past the surface and explore the true nature of things. This is what I mean by ‘unseen/seen.’ As I translate the scientific concepts, I get a greater appreciation for the beauty of things we cannot see and how mysterious our universe really is. That is what I want to explore and communicate to the observer: look beyond what you see and discover a richer more interesting universe.”