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Joseph Nechvatal 2004 Orgiastic abattOir
Wires by Perry Welman 2007

Computer art is any art in which computers played a role in production or display of the artwork. Such art can be an image, sound, animation, video, CD-ROM, DVD-ROM, videogame, web site, algorithm, performance or gallery installation. Many traditional disciplines are now integrating digital technologies and, as a result, the lines between traditional works of art and new media works created using computers has been blurred. For instance, an artist may combine traditional painting with algorithm art and other digital techniques. As a result, defining computer art by its end product can thus be difficult. Computer art is by its nature evolutionary since changes in technology and software directly affect what is possible. Notable artists in this vein include James Faure Walker, Manfred Mohr, Ronald Davis, Joseph Nechvatal, Matthias Groebel, George Grie, Olga Kisseleva, John Lansdown and Perry Welman.

Contents

History

Picture by drawing machine 1, Desmond Paul Henry, c.1960s

By the mid-1960s, most individuals involved in the creation of computer art were in fact engineers and scientists because they had access to the only computing resources available at university scientific research labs. Many artists tentatively began to explore the emerging computing technology for use as a creative tool. In the summer of 1962, Dr. A. Michael Noll programmed a digital computer at Bell Telephone Laboratories in Murray Hill, New Jersey to generate visual patterns solely for artistic purposes .[1] His later computer-generated patterns simulated paintings by Piet Mondrian and Bridget Riley and become classics. [2] Noll also used the patterns to investigate aesthetic preferences in the mid 1960s.

Computer art dates back to at least 1960, with the invention of the Henry Drawing Machine by Desmond Paul Henry. His work was shown at the Reid Gallery in London in 1962, after his machine-generated art won him the privilege of a one-man exhibition. In 1963 Joan Shogren of San Jose State University wrote a computer program based on artistic principles, resulting in an early public showing of computer art in San Jose, California on May 6, 1963. [3]

The first two exhibitions of computer art were held in 1965- Computer-Generated Pictures, April 1965, at the Howard Wise Gallery in New York, and Generative Computergrafik, February 1965, at the Technische Hochschule in Stuttgart, Germany. The Stuttgart exhibit featured work by Georg Nees; the New York exhibit featured work by Bela Julesz and A. Michael Noll. Note the names of these expositions, not mentioning the word 'art', because these 'generated pictures' were not yet seen as such. A third exhibition was put up in November 1965 at Galerie Wendelin Niedlich in Stuttgart, Germany, showing works by Frieder Nake and Georg Nees.

In 1968, the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) in London hosted one of the most influential early exhibitions of computer art- Cybernetic Serendipity. The exhibition included many of whom often regarded as the first true digital artists, Nam June Paik, Frieder Nake, Leslie Mezei, Georg Nees, A. Michael Noll, John Whitney, and Charles Csuri.[4]. One year later, the Computer Arts Society was founded, also in London.[5]

At the time of the opening of Cybernetic Serendipity, in August 1968, a symposium was held in Zagreb, Yugoslavia, under the title "Computers and visual research". It took up the European artists movement of New Tendencies that had led to three exhibitions (in 1961, 63, and 65) in Zagreb of concrete, kinetic, and constructive art as well as op art and conceptual art. New Tendencies changed its name to "Tendencies" and continued with more symposia, exhibitions, a competition, and an international journal (bit international) until 1973.

Katherine Nash and Richard Williams published Computer Program for Artists: ART 1 in 1970.[6]

Xerox Corporation’s Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) designed the first Graphical User Interface (GUI) in the 1970s. The first Macintosh computer is released in 1984, since then the GUI became popular. Many graphic designers quickly accepted its capacity as a creative tool.

Output devices

The early technology restricted the output and print results. Early machines used pen-and-ink plotters to produce basic hard copy. In 1970s, the dot matrix printer much like a typewriter is used to reproduce varied fonts and arbitrary graphics. The first animations were created by plotting all still frames of the movie sequentially on a stack of paper, with the motion transferring to 16-mm film and projected. During 1970s and 1980s, dot matrix printers produced most of the visual output while microfilm plotter produced most of the early animation. [2]

Until 1976, the inkjet printer was invented with the use of personal computers. Inkjet printer is now the cheapest and most versatile option of everyday digital color output. RasterImage Processing (RIP) built into the printer or supplied as a software package for your computer is required to achieve the beset quality output. Basic inkjet devices don't have a RIP, thus relying on the graphic software to rasterize images. Laser printer, though more expensive than inkjets, is another affordable output device. [7]

Graphic software

Newskool ASCII Screenshot
Sprial Sphere and Julia, Detail, a computer-generated image programmed by visual artist Robert W. McGregor using only POV-Ray 3.6 and its built-in scene description language.

Adobe Systems, founded in 1982, developed the PostScript language and digital fonts, making drawing painting and image manipulation software popular. Adobe Illustrator, a vector drawing program based on the Bezier curve introduced in 1987 and Adobe Photoshop, written by brothers Thomas and John Knoll in 1990 were developed for use on MacIntosh computers.[8] and compiled for DOS/Windows platforms by 1993 You can also create some useful tools by using PHP GD. For example, you can create a ASCII art convertor, drop image effect, mirror effect and other useful effects.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ “The Beginnings of Computer Art in the United States: A Memoir,” Leonardo, Vol. 27, No. 1, (1994), pp. 39-44.
  2. ^ a b Dietrich, Frank (1986). "Visual Intelligence: The First Decade of Computer Art" (PDF). pp. 159-169. Leonardo. http://design.osu.edu/carlson/history/PDFs/dietrich-leonardo.pdf. Retrieved 2008-04-28.  
  3. ^ Raimes, Jonathan. (2006 ) The Digital Canvas, Abrams. ISBN 0-8109-9236-1
  4. ^ Raimes, Jonathan. (2006 ) The Digital Canvas, Abrams. ISBN 0-8109-9236-1
  5. ^ Page, No. 1, April 1969, p2.
  6. ^ Nash, Katherine; Richard H. Williams (October 1970). "Computer Program for Artists: ART I". Leonardo, Pergamon Press (via JSTOR) 3 (4): 439–442. doi:10.2307/1572264.  
  7. ^ Raimes, Jonathan. (2006 ) The Digital Canvas, Abrams. ISBN 0-8109-9236-1
  8. ^ Wands, Bruce. (2006) Art of the Digital Age, Thames & Hudson. ISBN 0-500-23817-0

Congress, exhibitions and promotion

References

  1. ^ “The Beginnings of Computer Art in the United States: A Memoir,” Leonardo, Vol. 27, No. 1, (1994), pp. 39-44.
  2. ^ a b Dietrich, Frank (1986). "Visual Intelligence: The First Decade of Computer Art" (PDF). pp. 159-169. Leonardo. http://design.osu.edu/carlson/history/PDFs/dietrich-leonardo.pdf. Retrieved 2008-04-28.  
  3. ^ Raimes, Jonathan. (2006 ) The Digital Canvas, Abrams. ISBN 0-8109-9236-1
  4. ^ Raimes, Jonathan. (2006 ) The Digital Canvas, Abrams. ISBN 0-8109-9236-1
  5. ^ Page, No. 1, April 1969, p2.
  6. ^ Nash, Katherine; Richard H. Williams (October 1970). "Computer Program for Artists: ART I". Leonardo, Pergamon Press (via JSTOR) 3 (4): 439–442. doi:10.2307/1572264.  
  7. ^ Raimes, Jonathan. (2006 ) The Digital Canvas, Abrams. ISBN 0-8109-9236-1
  8. ^ Wands, Bruce. (2006) Art of the Digital Age, Thames & Hudson. ISBN 0-500-23817-0

Further reading

External links

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