Kogan is an American born artist living in Grenoble France. His original artistic focus was to create functional forms from found, recycled, and industrial objects. This started from a strong affinity for old broken down musical instruments, their inherent beauty and grace. His intention was to give these instruments a "second life", to reestablish their functional status by transforming them into lamps, fashioning new forms from old objects.
As his art evolved, he realized that one can also "paint" with light, and that light need not be restricted to its more traditional functions, for traversing through space, for reading, for taking visual cues while communicating, to give three common examples. And in the process, and by design, his art lost much of its functional status.
"Painting with light" means that light can be filtered, mirrored, shadowed, colored, distorted, reflected, directed, and focused, all within context of the assemblage forms in which it interacts. In effect, light can be “shaped” and adapted, just as form can, as part of the overall sculptural composition. And this is his focus today.
Therefore, Kogan's most recent work would most appropriately be characterized as “assemblage light sculptures”, focusing on the arrangement and transformation of form, integrated with the “exploitation” of light.
Within this context, one is confronted with the "contradictory play" between form and light... With form being heavy, slow, permanent, and solid, as compared to light which is non-permanent, malleable, light (not heavy), transitory. The relation and exchange between these elements is essential to the visual experience.
Additionally, light, as an integrated element of his sculptures, has an essential, but non-typical role; For light is most often employed within the visual arts as an external source of
illumination. But here, light's function has evolved. It has become part of the artwork itself. The object illuminated and the source that illuminates have become one.