This is an abstract written in advance of its paper. My intent is to interest Fancy Art Conference enough that it grants me a spot in its presentations in December. Comments welcome, bloodletting preferred. The length is just about at maximum; if it loses weight, I can fit a pretty picture into the one-page template. Also, since I hate jargon, I did try to keep it away. However, I'm not scared of *dense.* I'm hoping to give up on it toward the end of June and just send it.
Artworks similar to whatever the hell I'm talking about:https://www.flickr.com/photos/marcmancuso/sets/72157645276988071/
Abstract version 3t:
This paper discusses the effect of generative concepts on the planning, execution, documentation, and interpretation of my series of recent three-dimensional sculptures. The preparation of metal, plaster, rubber, clay, plastic, and other commonplace materials falls easily within the sculptural traditions of any modestly-equipped studio, and require only a methodical sensibility toward measuring, cutting, fastening, noting elapsed time, and similar operations. Materials are then categorized as instances on a continuum between extremes including rigid-flexible, absorbent-waterproof, opaque-transparent, buoyant-dense, attractive-repulsive, durable-dissolvable, and so on. After the materials are prepared and conceptualized in this way, I build systems that allow me to specify the interaction of materials on an individual or categorical basis, to define and implement rule-sets, to regulate the order of interactions, and to manage constraints. Despite the choice to limit the use of virtual technologies, I show that it is the design and implementation of methodology that places the results of these activities within a generative context. In contrast to other physical systems in which familiar causal interactions and linear methods predominate, my challenge was to build systems that had both cyclic and open-ended processes from which there is no combination of form factor or surface evidence that traditionally identifies an object as precursor or final product. An additional challenge was that the systems should allow any transformation to be the initiating or concluding event of another process. Owing to the physical limitations involved that are not constraints in virtual systems, I discuss my successes and failures toward building systems that fill these requirements. A more concrete analysis discusses the extent to which these particular physical systems have analogs in virtual generative processes. I argue that these systems have close analogs to Boolean operations, graphical user interface tools such as fill
, programming structures such as loops, random number generators, and identities of geometry. Of particular interest is the way in which plaster, metal, clay, and rubber are used over a series of transformation to embody recursive structures, variations in high- and low-fidelity data compression, and distortion. A video and several still images illustrate the relationships among those transformations. The paper goes on to point out that documentation raises philosophical issues as well as practical ones. I discuss the implications of documenting systems that have been designed to make starting point and ending points of processes at least ambiguous, if not entirely irrelevant. Since these systems have one or more real-time unfolding aspects, and one or more physically durable artifacts, the documenting gesture provides a means of expression that might range from forensic
. Additionally I discuss whether concepts of vernacular
, and narrative
are relevant to discussions of these works. Finally, I discuss my future plans in which I show how these early designs can be interpreted in terms of selection
, that essential element in any context for which concepts of user
, and result
are applicable. Situated in this way, these processes serve as the starting point for projects that are more ambitious in scope and more detailed in structure.
Tags (tentative): analog computing, sculpture, mathematics, hierarchy, programming.