Read, Watch and Listen

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Paul Brown

Paul Brown 1947-

Swimming Pool

1997

Colour inkjet print

Museum number: E.994-2008

Brown uses tiling and ‘cellular automata’, simple systems that can evolve and propagate themselves. The artist employs relatively simple linear motifs in this print, but the relationship between each tile and its neighbours creates the visually intense patterns which he cannot always predict. 

 

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Roman Verostko

Roman Verostko 1929- 

Pathway Series, Bird 2

1990

Multi-pen plotter drawing with brush

Museum number: E. 943-2008

Verostko was one of the first artists to incorporate brush work in his computer-generated drawings, adapting a pen plotter to hold a Chinese brush.  This example includes a single plotter-driven brushstroke that uses the same ‘gesture’ as the numerous smaller pen and ink lines behind it. The three carefully placed rectangular shapes were also created by the plotter. 

© Victoria and Albert Museum, London/ Roman Verostko. Copyright: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (Creative Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International

 

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Barbara Nessim

Barbara Nessim 1939-

Ode to the Statue of Liberty 2

1982-1984

Cibachrome print of computer screen

Museum number: E.58-2013 

In 1980 Nessim was approached to participate in the Visible Language Workshop at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Although she was unable to take up the offer, she began to investigate using computers in her own work. In 1982 she obtained access to a Norpak computer system at TIME Video Information Services, and began to explore its limited range of shapes and colours. 

© Victoria and Albert Museum, London/ Barbara Nessim. Copyright: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International)

 

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Colette and Jeff Bangert

Colette Stuebe Bangert 1934- and Charles Jeff Bangert 1938-

GRASS: series I

1979

Plotter drawing

Museum number: E.1063-2008

The landscape of the mid-western USA is a central part of Colette and Jeff Bangert’s work. Their collaborative algorithmic drawings often reflect the changing seasons.  Colette stated, “The elements of the computer work and my hand work are often repetitive, like leaves, trees, grass… Grass is also random and random is a natural computer facility.” Since the 1980s their work has also explored disorder, revealing an increasing fascination with chaos and complexity. 

© Victoria and Albert Museum, London/ Colette and Jeff Bangert. Copyright: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International)

 

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Manfred Mohr

Manfred Mohr 1938-

P-197

1977-1979

Screenprint

Museum number: E.58-2008

Mohr began his career as a jazz musician and expressionist painter. He started to explore the use of geometric imagery in the mid-1960s, producing his first computer-generated drawings in 1969.  In this print produced from a plotter drawing, the computer program creates a range of geometric shapes that echo some of his earlier paintings.  From 1972 onwards, Mohr has concentrated on examining the possibilities presented by the cube.  

© Victoria and Albert Museum, London/ Manfred Mohr. Copyright: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International)

 

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Vera Molnar

Vera Molnar 1924-

Structure of Squares

1974

Plotter drawing

Museum number: E.270-2011

Vera Molnar first started to use computers in 1968. However, her systematic method for creating art began in 1959 when she developed the concept of the Machine Imaginaire, which identified a series of hypothetical steps by which an image would be created.  Molnar imagined she had a computer and designed a program which formulated rules of behaviour. At the earliest opportunity she replaced her make believe machine with a real one.

© Victoria and Albert Museum, London/ Vera Molnar. Copyright: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International)

 

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Frieder Nake

Frieder Nake 1938-

Walk-through-Raster 

1967

Plotter drawing

Museum number: E.120-2013

Nake was among the first people to exhibit computer drawings as works of art, in Stuttgart in 1964. He is also considered to be one of the founding fathers of what we now think of as computer graphics. This work was produced using an algorithm written by the artist.  Nake introduced random variables into the process, and could not fully predict the outcome.

© Victoria and Albert Museum, London/ Frieder Nake. Copyright: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International)

 

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A. Michael Noll

A. Michael Noll 1949-

Computer Composition with Lines

1964 

Photograph 

Museum number: E.35-2011 

This is a photographic print of a computer-generated image created by A. Michael Noll in 1964, at Bell Labs, Murray Hill, New Jersey. The artist has stated that "This work closely mimics the painting ‘Composition with Lines’ by Piet Mondrian. When reproductions of both works were shown to 100 people, the majority preferred the computer version and believed it was done by Mondrian."

© Victoria and Albert Museum, London/ A. Michael Noll. Copyright: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International)

 

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Desmond Paul Henry

Desmond Paul Henry 1921-2004

Serpent

1962

Mechanical pen and ink drawing

Museum number: E.377-2009

In the 1960s, D.P. Henry constructed various drawing machines from the components of analogue bombsight computers.  Henry was fascinated by the swinging motion of the machines and adapted them to accommodate pen and paper.  His drawing machines were operated electronically, but could not be programmed. 

© Victoria and Albert Museum, London/ Elaine O’Hanrahan. Copyright: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International)

 

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Herbert W. Franke

Herbert W. Franke 1927-

Analog-Grafik P2

1970, from a photograph produced in 1955 

Silkscreen print

Museum number: E.100-2008

Franke produced his experimental photographs by moving a camera across the small screen of an oscilloscope.  He could alter the curves by using a mixing console that provided some degree of control over the image’s appearance. 

© Victoria and Albert Museum, London/ Herbert W. Franke. Copyright: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International)

 

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