Archives for the Month of December, 2009

Hubert Blanz – Geospaces

Geospaces - Hubert Blanz
Geospaces – Hubert Blanz

The similarities between the schematics of PCB’s (printed circuit boards) and the layout of towns and cities has been noted extensively. In both cases typical constraints derived from functionality generates grid-like orderings of items and objects with similar scale distributions. In both, the transportation of materials is explicit and that flow is regarded as one of the paramount aspects to planning, whether it be the flow of people, goods, electrons, or data.

Hubert Blanz Geospaces C-Prints take this isomorphism to its logical limit, to a point where both cities and circuit boards merge into one, and where the macro and micro scales contain each other. The components in Hubert’s city circuits are cleverly positioned to temp the viewer into making specific associations. Varying shades of green hint at different kinds of neighbourhoods, for example, and circular elements appear as concert halls or auditoriums.

A excellent book documenting PCBs from both an artistic and historical point of view is the out of print ‘Information Art: Diagramming Microchips’ by Cara McCarty. You can find some images from the book here.

Selected tweets #4

Selected Tweets #4
Videos of pond life РAntonio Guill̩n

Microblogged: recent selected tweets from my Twitter stream.

Microscopic manoeuvres, Amoebic transformations & Protozoic propulsions. Videos of pond life from Antonio Guillén.

Terminal Mirage – Aerial photographs of environmentally impacted sites by Dave Maisel.

Two Boxes at Once – Old School computational Op Art from 1979 by Mark McKernin.

Chromointerferences – Perceptual work by Carlos Cruz-Diez recently on show at The Mayor Gallery, London.

Multiverse, by Leo Villareal, a 200 foot long light installation that uses 41,000 programmed LED’s.

SoniCoumn -An Interactive kinetic light pattern sculpture by Jin-Yo Mo.

Rhonda – A real-time 3d drawing application from Amit Pitaru and James Paterson.

Melissa Manfull has produced a series of intricate process drawings evocative of organic systems and processes.

Revisitingg Aspen Magazine on-line, particularly No9 which was edited by Angus & Hetty Maclise.

A Random Mechanical Cascade – Randomisation via games of chance and the law of frequency of error at Cabinet Magazine.

Selected Tweets #4
Dream Music/Keyboard Study #2 – La Monte Young

Natural History of the Enigma – Eduardo Kac implants his own genes into a Petunia to create a transgenic flower.

Max Frey constructs Rotoscopic light-drawing works.

Sarah Moli Newton Applebaum has instigated some colourful knitting invasions.

Kosmograd reports on Orville Simpson II, who for 70 years, has been dreaming of the utopian community of Victory City.

Petra Kempfs beautiful ‘You are the City’ publication. 22 conceptual layers and frameworks of a city [Also via Kosmograd].

The Visual Context of Music. More non-standard musical notation and esoteric scores at BibliOdyssey.

Auto-configuring robots, are of course where it’s at. Here are some from the Polymorphic Robots Lab.

And yet more biologically inspired self-assembling modular robots at SpatialRobots.

Micro-organisms ‘predict’ how their environs may change in the future, based on how they have changed in the past via Seedmagazine.

Emergent behaviour in Ant colonies used to understand group behaviour of neurons. Gives a new meaning to Hive Mind.

Magic Forest - Andrew Carnie’s Neuroscientific artwork tracking the growth & organisation of neurones in the brain.

The MandelBulb – Daniel White

The MandelBulb - Daniel White
The MandelBulb – Daniel White

Once in a while a new species of self-similarity jumps out of the screen contrasting itself against an otherwise clich̩d gang of garish and well-worn looking fractals. The Mandelbulb is an extruded 3d implementation of the well-known Mandelbrot iterative function developed by Daniel White. This particular chaotic expulsion generates organic looking surfaces complete with baroque vegetation Рits not hard to imagine a forest of Romanesque cauliflowers invading a small cave, growing in clumps of (a)symmetry.

As well as the botanical, the Mandelbulb also alludes to the geological. Contained within the complex forms are rocky striations and eroded sedimentations. Some of the renders have a distinctly plastery feel to them – envisage the work of a hyper industrious Artex artisan hooked on Hofstader.

Julya Sets & Fractal Cities
Results 1 – 20 of about 156,000 for Fractal

Vic Haven – Landscapes of intersections, forces and systems

Vic Haven
Asteroids (detail), 2006 & Pressure Drop (detail), 2005

In works like Asteroids and Pressure Drop Vic Haven employs the intersection of lines to create the illusion of distorted tessellations and crystal-like structures. If the ordered flat plane dynamics of a decorative Moorish tiling was allowed to unravel under an imagined elastic tension the resultant pattern might bare a lot in common with Asteroids. The system of tensile forces pull apart the network apart to create the illusion of a non-uniform fa̤ade Рin between negative star (or Asteroid) shaped spaces are formed from the tangle.

This segmentation and triangulation technique is used in profusion in much of Vic’s work. In Infrastructure, mirrored Mylar on Polypropylene is cut to create a landscape dense with the connections of possible transportation links or power supply lines. But, as the exhibition statement reminds us, these links might also demarcate invisible structures – communication networks or even moral/religious belief systems.

Flickr Fruits #31

Flickr Fruits #31
BridgeFill04 0001 – Marius Watz

Marius Watz’s recently documented generative piece, Bridge Hypothesis, was made for ‘Bright Nights’ a projection event connected with the centennial celebration of the Manhattan Bridge. The work is marked by a strong sense of colour combined with some complex compositions of individual elements. These elements take the form of branching structures which spread into space of their own accord with ‘no regard for gravity.’

Toxi’s [Karsten Schmidt] Onedotzero set documents his identity generator software, developed in collaboration with W+K, for the AV festival of the same name. The piece, which was projected onto the facade of BFI in London, concerns itself with the mathematics behind magnetic fields. In keeping with the open source ethos Toxi has released the entire engine for you play around with. Furthermore there is Flickr group documenting hacks, remixes and extensions of the code.

As with the previous two artists, Kat Masback is no stranger to these pages. A recent Flickr set, Proslop extends an idea she first presented to us for the Biomorph addition of Vague Terrain. Dice throws are used as a generative device to create combinatorial drawings with structures derived from random number sequences.

The slot valleys of Antelope Canyon as a hydro-dynamic computation

Twists and Turns – Mandj98

The slot valleys of Antelope Canyon, Arizona, are a beautiful example of the (de)generative process of aqueous erosion of sandstone rock. Technically known as Slot Valleys, these pre-historic canyons have been carved via a millennia of fast intermittent flowing waters, the result of yearly monsoons.

The vortices and whorls have left their mark in the walls of the rock which incorporate smooth undulations and spiral formations, all the more accentuated by the combination of light penetrating the surfaces of the red-orange rock.

‘Some canyons measure less than a yard across at the top but drop a hundred feet or more from the rim to the natural floor. Slots are cut and scoured by water and wind with the striations of the sandstone becoming almost incandescent. Seen from the surface, a slot canyon appears as a slash. From within you find a palette of colours transmuted by light filtering down from above and bouncing from wall to wall.’

Since the sandstone has the qualities of particulate matter, it makes the process of erosion a suitable candidate for computational modelling and simulation. These kinds spatio-temporal emergent patterns are readily simulated by Cellular Automata systems. Acolytes of the Universal Computation paradigm will feel comfortable with the idea that time-space ordering of these shapes is nothing more that an immensely long and complex hydro-dynamic ‘computer program’.