I few years ago I was browsing in the shop of the now-closed Function 13 gallery in Kensington Market. It’s really too bad that the gallery couldn’t survive as it was the only spot in Toronto that kept its pulse on the small and emergent digital art scene. If you were a generative artist, this was the gallery that would get what you’re doing. I’m not sure what the alternative is right now..
But anyway, as I was browsing, I randomly picked up this book ‘Code Drawings’ that was filled with very elaborate and dynamic black and white ‘generative sketches’. Or that’s what I assumed at first, only to discover that the sketches were actually hand-made drawings that adhered to a set of rules defined by artist Son Vo:
The project directly references the work of Sol LeWitt who created a his well-known series of Wall Drawings based on a variation of loose guidelines and diagrams. I just love the fact that a single line of instruction becomes the seed for 200 unique and beautiful drawings. That’s really the crux of what attracts me to generative art so much — the possibility of creating great complexity with very simple input. Granted, I like to use the computer to speed up the process. And yet, as these drawings remind us, it’s certainly not a prerequisite for engaging with the same ideas.