In the early spring I went to go see Casey Reas speak about his work He referenced Sol LeWitt’s instruction based art works as a source for his work. LeWitt would send parameters and instructions to galleries to create the art work themselves.In this method he would communicate complex drawings through precise instructions such as the following piece from the MoMA in 1978:
Three-part drawing: A six-inch (15 cm) grid covering the walls. 1st wall: On a red wall, blue lines from each corner to points on the grid, yellow lines from the center to points on the grid; 2nd wall: On a yellow wall, blue lines from each corner to points on the grid, red lines from the midpoint of each side to points on the grid; 3rd wall: On a blue wall, red lines from the midpoint of each side to points on the grid, yellow lines from the center to points on the grid. (The number of lines and their length are determined by the draftsmen, but each wall has an equal number of lines.)
The idea of prescribing rules to programatic objects has stuck in my mind since Reas’ talk. I worked on this theme and built a system of circles that follow a few behaviors and executes a drawing. Though I like the look of this project as static images, I feel it also has a life as a screen based piece that follows the evolution of the drawings. The circles are first drawn to random points on the screen. They pick a destination, and then when they reach it they pick a new one and move there. If along the way they run into another circle iit is considered that they are mating. When the circles mate they add together each one’s colors. After a circle reaches a certain age and it has mated it can die. When a circle dies a new one is born and its predescessors trails are faded out a little bit at a time. At points during this progression you get different static images. Many times there are mass die outs, and births that disolve all trails and return the screen to black with individual circles.