This page shows all the posts tagged with watz. Other popular tags are: art, generative, design, processing.org, generator.x, exhibition, vj, visualization, visuals, music. You can also browse all tags together.
Golan Levin: The Dumpster / Martin Wattenberg: Thinking Machine 4
DATA ART: The art of the database
The other identifiable tendency in the FURTHER PROCESSING exhibiton is data visualization as a new type of cultural artifact. Ben Fry's “Isometric Blocks” is a scientific visualization of blocks of genetic codes, while Golan Levin's “The Dumpster” datamines the world of teenager blogs to find patterns in blog posts relating to romantic breakups. Martin Wattenberg's “Thinking Machine” shows the user how a computerized chess player “sees” the playing board as a field of energies in flux. Pablo Miranda Carranza experiments with architectural principles and parametric design, creating systems that learn to design their own output through the use of genetic algorithms.
These works have aspects of design objects or results of scientific research, but their popularity with lay audiences are proof positive of their emotional impact. Contradicting their status as “objective” visualizations of dry data, these works can in fact be seen as a pure form of computational art. Within the context of FURTHER PROCESSING these works are shown as examples of a new type of cultural artifact, pointing to a need for better tools for understanding the complex world of information that surrounds us.
PROCESSING: The tool
Processing was originally created by C.E.B. Reas and Ben Fry in 2001, when they were both at the Aesthetics & Computation Group (AGC) at the MIT Media Lab. Directed by John Maeda, the ACG was the one of the first academic programs to combine computational and aesthetic theory.
Processing tries to reduce the threshold keeping non-technical persons from experimenting with code by employing a set of core strategies:
- A simplified language syntax, allowing immediate experimentation with visual output.
- A programming interface which is intuitive and non-technical
- An Open Source architecture, which allows the extension of the tool by its users.
Since its inception, the Processing project has received considerable attention and the tool is now used as a standard teaching tool by many art and design schools worldwide. In 2005 Processing won a Golden Nica award in the Prix Ars Electronica.
Processing will be on display in the exhibition, so that visitors can try the tool and hopefully get a taste of code for themselves.
Karsten Schmidt: enerugii wa antee shite inai I (Unstable Energy I)
Mark Napier: Genesis (7 bit)
FURTHER PROCESSING: Generative art, open systems
23.09.-11.11.2006, Kunstverein Medienturm, Graz
Pablo Miranda Carranza (ES), Fabio Franchino (IT), Ben Fry (USA), Golan Levin (USA), Lia (AT), Mark Napier (USA), C.E.B. Reas (USA), Martin Wattenberg (USA), Marius Watz (NOR). Curated by Sandro Droschl and Marius Watz.
FURTHER PROCESSING uses the Open Source software Processing as a departure point to examine positions based on computational processes. Programming has always been a component in computer-based media art, but there is now an increasing interest in software and the computer code itself as methods of artistic exploration. Combined with the emergence of a new generation raised on microcomputers, BASIC programming and the Internet, this has produced a new movement within the media art scene, one which is concerned with code-based abstraction and the art of the database.
GENERATIVE ART: The system as art object
All software is by its nature based on systems. It is not surprising then that much software-based art is concerned with the system itself as an object of investigation. Loosely grouped under the term Generative Art, this work goes beyond the simple desire to use code as a tool. Instead, algorithms and code structures become the framework and material for the work itself.
Historical art movements like Conceptual Art, Minimalism, Fluxus and Op Art, as well as artists like Bridget Riley and Sol LeWitt, can serve as a background for understanding this artistic practice. At the same time. the importance of new scientific theories like complexity theory, emergence and artificial life should not be ignored. Advances in contemporary electronic music is another influence, with several of the artists working with musicians to produce software-based performance systems for the synaesthetic combination of sound and image in a live context.
Lia: O.I.G.C / C.E.B. Reas: Process 9 (software 3)
Within FURTHER PROCESSING several artists adopt a generative position, but with distinct formal interests. Lia and C.E.B. Reas use kinetic processes as an analog to drawing, leaving complex traces on the screen’s canvas that become heavily layered surfaces. They both show a sparse use of form and color, but while Lia exhibitis a minimalist aesthetic, Reas’ work is richly layered and complex. Fabio Franchino explores the computation as a design tool by commenting on the nature of pattern, which itself can be said to be a practice of rules. His “Unfinished Wall” describes a pattern that is non-repeating, which through procedural creation could be generated on a vast scale.
Karsten Schmidt and Marius Watz deal with the evolution of structures in space, tracing out virtual sculptural forms on the screen. Here vivid color and density of the forms is used to great effect, producing bold spatial compositions. Finally, Mark Napier's “Genesis (7 bit)” is daring enough to use the text of Genesis from the Old Testament as raw material, interpreting the letters as the coordinates for points in space. The resulting arcs and filament-like traces are delicate and mesmerizing.
The generative works in FURTHER PROCESSING present an aesthetic of complexity, concerned with formal explorations of spatial and temporal parameters. Ranging from the opulent to the minimalist, these pieces comfortably bridge the gap between an electronic image culture and traditions in drawing and painting.
For more information, see Kunstverein Medienturm.
To be followed by pt.#2, on Data art.
Generator.x: The concert tour (Phonophani, Lia vs. Emi Maeda)
Generator.x: The concert tour – 19-29 April, 2006
Phonophani (NO) / Marius Watz (NO)
Emi Maeda (JP) / Lia (AT)
Frank Bretschneider (DE)
This week sees the beginning of the Generator.x concert tour, with 7 dates all over Norway – we’ll even go north of the Arctic Circle. The tour is produced by Rikskonsertene, and presents a selection of artists working with generative strategies in the intersection between sound and visual performance. Co-curators are Marius Watz and Alexander Rishaug, the latter also known for his music and his RandomSystem festival projects.
Norwegian Phonophani (aka Espen Sommer Eide) will play glitchy improvisations using Max/MSP, accompanied by generative visuals by Marius Watz. Helsinki-based harpist Emi Maeda will play harp combined with electronic sound manipulations, with Lia doing visuals. Finally we are pleased to be joined by Frank Bretschneider from Berlin, one of the founders of the renowned Raster-Noton label and a veteran of minimalist beats and sine wave abstractions. In what could be seen as a continuation of the Gesamtkunstwerk tradition, Bretschneider also produces visuals from his sound works.
Photos from the tour will be put online on Flickr.
Generator.x: Tour dates
- 19 April, Oslo: Presentation at NoTAM Forum
- 20 April, Trondheim: Blæst (w/ Monolithic)
- 21 April, Oslo: Blå
- 22 April, Fredrikstad: St.Croix huset
- 26 April, Bergen: Landmark
- 27 April, Tromsø: KAOS
- 28 April, Drammen: Union Scene
- 29 April, Stavanger: Tou Scene (w/ FE-MAIL)
Our thanks go to Rikskonsertene, Alexander Rishaug and local organizers like TEKS, BEK and Tou Scene for making this tour possible.
For information about the concert that took place during the Generator.x conference in Oslo, please visit the Generator.x Club page.
Barcelona is always a nice place to be, but the upcoming second week in May may hold particular interest to creatives working with digital media. The reason is the OFFF festival for "Post-Digital Creation Culture". Now in its fifth year, OFFF has moved away from its Flash-oriented roots and embraced the full spectrum of experimental digital work. According to the festival site, OFFF is exploring “software aesthetics and new languages for interactive and visual expression.”
The festival’s biggest pull is probably the presentations by a core of well-known creatives, with names like Kyle Cooper, Weworkforthem, Nando Costa and many more. This year the list is also conspicuously full of names from the computational design and generative art fields: Ben Fry, Golan Levin, Casey Reas, Marcos Weskamp, Zach Lieberman etc. It’s an interesting mix, and while the actual program of events hasn’t been announced yet there are sure to be some good presentations.
A special partner event of OFFF is the EXTEND: Advanced Processing Workshop. Co-produced by OFFF and Hangar (an art centre for the audiovisual arts), the one-week EXTEND workshop will be led by Ben Fry, Casey Reaz, Zachary Lieberman and Marius Watz. The workshop is intended for artists and designers who already know how to code, but who would like to experiment with new topics, learn how to extend the Processing tool itself or just play around in a constructive environment.
The workshop fee is set at a low EUR 50, so it should be accessible to freelancers without design agencies who can bankroll them. The number of places are limited, however. To be accepted, applicants must submit a personal biography and a description of previous experience with Processing.
Application deadline is 21 April. See the following call for more information.
This Saturday marks the opening of the second incarnation of the Generator.x exhibition on its travelling tour, this time in the beautiful city of Stavanger. The venue is Tou Scene, a local powerhouse for art, music and alternative culture. Tou was set up by independent artists in 2001, who took over the amazing buildings of the abandoned Tou Breweries. The project’s continued existence was ensured through support over the State Budget this year.
The opening will be an all-evening program, starting at 18:00 with the exhibition vernissage. Then there will be live musical performances and VJ’ing as the night goes on. The programme is not yet finalized, but participants will include Trond Lossius (soundart), Gisle Frøysland (visuals), Marius Watz (visuals) as well as local DJs and artists. Details to follow.
Stavanger lies on the south-west coast of Norway (see Google Local for reference). It is the little Texas of Norway, known for oil production and beautiful coastal landscapes (including the spectacular rock formation called The Pulpit). It is also a haven for extreme sports, where surfers (kite and regular) can find prime spots on the windy beaches. But make sure to wear a drysuit against the cold water. This is not California, people.
Links (in Norwegian):
Juha Huuskonen of PixelACHE has posted a summary of the lectures Casey and I gave in Helsinki directly after the Generator.x conference. Juha has captured the essence of the lectures well, I particularly like the soundbites he has saved for posterity.
Marius Watz: System_C, 2004
…with our own Marius Watz.
Appearing today on Artificial.dk is an interview of Marius Watz by Thomas Petersen on the subject of generative art. Interviewer and interviewee discuss how generative art can introduce new forms and concepts to traditional art practice. Topics addressed include the role of visual pleasure in art production and reception, the relationship between software art and generative art, and the place of generative art within the electronic art world. The first part of the interview also hammers out a good working definition of generative art, including a list of names of early influences on the genre. Marius also discusses in a bit of depth his installation, the Universal Digest Machine, which was awarded an Honorable Mention at the 2005 Prix Ars Electronica, and represents a departure from his typical work.
Not content to rest once the Generator.x conference finally happens this weekend, Casey Reas and I will go to Helsinki to present our respective work next Tuesday at PixelACHE. I will be presenting the Generator.x project as well as showing some of my own work.
The invitation is online on the PixelACHE site. Thanks to Finnish mastermind Juha Huuskonen for inviting us. No matter what happens, a trip to Helsinki is always interesting. Just see how exciting it looks when my bio is translated to Finnish:
After Helsinki we’ll head for Berlin, where Casey has a solo show at the Digital Art Museum.