"el inefable momento del colorido descubrimiento" ("the ineffable moment of the colorful discovery") is part of the fxhash interactive minting experience at The Ever-Evolving World of Art, Art Basel Hong-Kong, 2022.
It is a tribute to playful discovery. This work was commissioned for the Art Basel Hong Kong / Tezos / fxhash collaboration, as part of an activity to introduce visitors into generative art. As I was pondering what could I do in the short time available, I saw my youngest daughter drawing: the ineffable moment of colorful discovery. Child play is one of the most discovery-filled activities I can think of. And drawing is that joy that I describe: a blank piece of paper with a crayon is pure possibility. Which is what generative art is. I had wanted for quite some time to create a tribute to those drawings my daughters do, and this has been the perfect occasion to start it: it seemed to me that it fit the occasion perfectly: kids discover through painting, maybe adults can discover generative art using the same visual language.
"el inefable momento del colorido descubrimiento" is a work that explores colour and irregular basic shapes, and that leaves the viewer in front of a new space with each execution. Does it trigger any excitement to see those imperfect elements? It is dearest to me to see the hearts and rainbows, as two mainstays of the drawings that I keep in folders and count in the hundreds and thousands. Can an algorithm that reproduces those elements trigger the same warm feelings in the viewer? It does with me.
The piece lets the viewer explore certain characteristics. The viewer can pause the iterations: each is just an execution of the same drawing, slightly different. When paused, one can look at each line individually and notice how the drawing is constructed. When running, it gives an idea of how the things we know are just versions of the ideal concept they represent.
Also, one can have an idea of what would have happened if the child had decided to draw more or less elements. The viewer can press “e” to see different variations of the same piece: random elements are selected and displayed. To restore the original work, press “r”. Which one is the “finished” artwork? All of them. What is “the” artwork?
The work has the following commands:
- Change the work: “e”. To restore: “r”
- The painting can be paused/unpaused pressing “p”
- The viewer can save an artwork pressing “s” (it will pause the piece, press "p" to unpause)
- The resolution can be arbitrarily changed pressing “d” followed by a number from 1 to 9. If the image goes dark and nothing paints, press “d 0” (d zero) and try again with a lower number. Resolution can be increased iteratively: press d 2, then d 2, etc. It will always add the amount to the current pixel density, thus increasing resolution.
- The viewer can see how many decisions are made per iteration. This might be interesting to those who don’t know how generative art works. Each iteration is composed of thousands of decisions that inform colour, positions, shapes, etc. To toggle the decision count view, press “q”
- It has also colour controls: press z for brightness, x for contrast, g for gamma, b for blur, n for noise followed by + or - to alter their values. You might get some simple variations that you might enjoy. Press a to enable/disable all colour controls (except the noise).
- There are some pre-recorded colour variations: press “v” followed by 1, 2 or 3. Press “v” followed by 0 (zero) to reset the variations.
In every process of discovery, one comes to an "aha" moment ;) If you find your aha moment, then you can do one more thing: you can play with the size of certain elements pressing “o”. To restore, reload the piece. Once you find your aha moment, you can go back the same way you got there. All the controls work the same when one has reached their aha moment.
I hope you enjoy the piece as much as I have enjoyed drawing it, directly or indirectly, with my daughters. Thanks.
Artwork by Marcelo Soria-Rodríguez, @msoriaro.
Made with p5js and glsl.