In August, Smashing Magazine posted a list of 45 examples of code-generated artwork. That is, artwork created using not only sophisticated computer software like Maya, 3D Studio Max, and Photoshop, but also programs, like ActionScript, that take algorithms and generate imagery according to whatever code is typed into the computer. There are some really beautiful images, and looking at them got me thinking of the time when I'd hear people (mainly my high school art teachers) criticizing computer art as a medium less worthy of praise or admiration because, as they said, "the computer does the work for you."
People don't seem to be saying that as much anymore. I think many of those in the art field, at the time, were still feeling threatened by computers - as if they'd be replaced by automated artists churning out works on an assembly line somewhere. Luckily that turned out to be very far from the truth. Computers are merely another tool in the artist's toolbox.
Here are some of my favorites from this list.
"Circle Explosion" by Mark Knol
It's the perfect union of art and science, or mathematics, if you want to get technical about it. Despite the fact that the computer is the one implementing the information, it still takes a human mind to give it the right information to create the image. It requires not only computer knowledge but also some understanding of color and compositional concepts. Cool stuff.
Then, of course, there's the more representational side of computer generated art. These are amazing.
"Hektor" by Mark Denko
"Living Room" by Phillip Widmer