MANHATTAN — Harlem resident Bentley Meeker used lush lighting to set the mood for the weddings of Catherine Zeta-Jones and Michael Douglas, Chelsea Clinton and Melissa Rivers.
Now his latest lighting display, his first art exhibition, will be celebrated at a gallery in NoLita on Thursday.
Meeker, 44, said his exhibition "Flame to Now," which will be on view at Gallery Nine5 on Spring Street near Mott Street through April 10, will alert viewers to how they encounter light in their everyday lives.
"You walk from a fluorescent-lit office to a halogen-lit coffee shop and you feel different, but you don't understand why," he said. "I'm trying to create a direct corollary between how our souls and how our minds relate to light."
The exhibit features three sets of objects — bundle of roses, painted ropes and Gibson Flying V guitars — in which each item in the set is lit differently to show how light can create different moods and effects, Meeker said.
Individual objects are lit with different types of light of identical strenght including early-style tungsten, incandescent, halogen, fluorescent and LED.
The northern Virginia native was first struck by light as a child, seeing beams of sun stream through fall leaves on a fall afternoon in Washington, D.C.'s Rock Creek Park.
"It was the most magical experience that I still, to this day, have ever had," he said.
As an adult, Meeker lit television shows and events, and gradually began working with celebrities.
"The overall idea is to develop people's own relationship with light and to understand it better," he said.
Gallery Nine5, located at 24 Spring St., is open Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 12 noon to 7 p.m., Sunday 12 noon to 6 p.m. and by appointment.