3. Interfaces and technology

Since all geometries may be expressed in algebraic terms, the rendering of particular combinations of numbers is expected to produce particular imagery. Playing with the programming script means changing its visual appearance when rendered. The opposite is also true. Customizing the look of a rendered image is customizing the script behind it. This is the essential idea behind the fine art oriented algorithm: the handling of script and image in both directions, front-to-end and end-to-front. Real values that are specifically chosen are assigned at the end side. Achieving rich fine-art attributes in the final look means writing into the script the specific values that will invoke such attributes.

Moreover, this data can be shifted and mutated as a continuum. Line, shape, color, space, value, shade and light are a flow of numbers that, when undergoing a mutation, can maintain the consistency of the entire complex. This will resolve such fine art concerns like the congruence of complex color with a suitable, adaptable, and fluent geometrical environment that can be shifted, en bloc, toward a certain expression. It may lead to highly interesting results deriving from the specific values we have entered into the process. Such results could not have been foreseen or created by hand. This is very important because it ensures the simultaneous manipulation of mathematical and fine art expectations and leads to surprise, which in turn leads to inspiration and finally to intuition. The chain intuition-inspiration-idea-execution-result-surprise-intuition... feeds itself and sustains the interest for further experimentation.

The simultaneous manipulation of images as data is now possible due to the complexity of available imaging software (sophisticated vector and raster handling of data for both still and animated imaging). Interface and open architecture provide most of the tools needed to input—in numeric or visual format—the customary values that will, in turn, lead (by rendering) to the object’s anticipated fine-art qualities, look, and behavior.

There are many ways mathematics can be expressed: with a stick on wet sand, with chalk on a wall, with colors and brushes on canvas, with pen-and-ink or gouache on paper, and so forth. While most of these media may suffice to correctly “write” a mathematical demonstration, further considerations should be taken when evaluating its artistic look.” This is because each medium is, by itself, the carrier of a host of attributes that may or may not serve the specificity of the work: i.e., its origin in the realm of mathematics and targeting of specific fine-art criteria; emulation of creation and emphasis on the atemporal and everlasting;

This is because each media is, by itself, the carrier of a host of attributes that may or may not serve the specificity of this work: originating in the realm of mathematics and targeting specific fine art criteria. Emulating creation and emphasizing the atemporal and the everlasting.

Therefore, the media most appropriate will be the one that minimizes the invasion of kitsch (presence of unwanted elements/attributes that are inherent to the media in use but foreign to the inner nature of the process).

In this respect, digital technologies are the closest to the real nature of Epuré’s experiment and are even more so if they can provide for complex and flexible interfaces that allow the simultaneous handling of the fine arts and mathematical considerations.

The fine-art oriented algorithm is free of, but compliant with, the use of computers or other devices. At any given moment, all rules and procedures that are otherwise  expressed in algebraic terms, may be translated into experimental machine code. Its steps and operations are, in principle, the same when working with conventional media or digitally. Either way, both  methods serve the same algorithmic thinking.