The work of Daniera ter Haar & Christoph Brach, who have become better known by the name of one of their projects, Raw Color, is highly prismatic, covering the spectrum between art, design, photography and color research by mixing the powerful colors of vegetables, innovative color harvesting processes, with unique applications for print and textiles. Each project is created with an astute design sense and captured with stunningly composed photography.
The Eindhoven, Netherlands based team uses color as the 'connection between their different practices' posing questions like, 'what is the nature of a color and what is the connection to its physical state?' This post focuses on their research on vegetable pigments. Two other posts to follow will focus on their design and photography.
“Color is a really nice connection between those disciplines. We use it almost as a material, and it’s transformative the way it can make something seem hard or light or heavy.”
A visual research about vegetables and their powerful color. Vegetables are dismantled and purified to their visual essence 'RAW COLOR'. The harvested color is captured by a new process preserving their intensity on color cards. Categorized by shades and families a new map is created which shows their beautiful diversity. This projects reinterprets the vegetable and puts it into a new context.
Trying to apply some of our strongest pigment we made some juice cartridges. These inkjets prints are done with (C) Red Cabbage, (M) Beetroot en (Y) Pumpkin. Caused by the irregular juice flow, the ink jet created unique stripe pattern in every print.
A series of photography created as a reaction of the earlier research done on the color cards. This is a further examination on the visual structure of the vegetables.
100%SAP is a project about the power of natural color. Vegetables are transformed to a natural ink to feed a new printing process. This process enables the viewer to watch the posters print slightly grow. A 3-D ingredient returns as 2-D icon.
What is the nature of a colour and what is the connection to its physical state. Based on the ongoing research of deriving pigments from vegetables, the aim was to showcase the liquid condition of the colour before it is fixated to the medium of paper or textile. Compared to its solid condition, transparencies and volumes play suddenly an important role.
Presented in a cabinet the 130 preserved containers expose pure and mixed shades of different vegetables and different mixing ratios. This project was developed for the exhibition Dutch Domestics at the Museum für Angewandte Kunst in Frankfurt.
What unites Raw Color’s work in general — is a steadfast devotion to the exuberant exploration of color.
We were asked by Edwin Plerser to showcase the Raw Color project. One of our aims was to develop a 'product' that could be sold in his shop, and similarly add a new chapter to our research on vegetable pigments. For the exhibition we developed 'Raw Textiles', a series of hand dyed silk scarves, that derived from the vegetable pigments. This was the first time that we examined the application of the dyes on textile. We deepened ourselves in the old techniques of dyeing textile with natural pigments and their possibilities. After dyeing the silk for several days it resulted in 18 unique shades that were created by pure and mixed vegetable dyes. We presented them as a big gradient in the window display. For those who are interested, they are for sale!
Fascinated by the idea of shaping a textile by the pure usage of light, we developed 'Exposures' a photosensitive fabric based on the blueprint technique. The 'gradient machine' is especially designed for the production process and exposes the textile in horizontal lines to the daylight. These line-thickness can be adjusted. Depending on the length of exposure, the light is captured in the material, that is resulting in different shades of blue. The longer exposed the darker the fabric will become, which is not only indicated by the colour itself but as well by the numbers representing each lines' exposure time in minutes.
"White isn’t wrong,” says ter Haar, “but it does mean you don’t have to make a specific choice.”