"I had no desire to copy Pollock. I didn’t want to take a stick and dip it in a can of enamel. I needed something more liquid, watery, thinner. All my life, I have been drawn to water and translucency. I love the water; I love to swim, to watch changing seascapes. One of my favorite childhood games was to fill a sink with water and punt nail polish into to see what happened when the colors burst up the surface, merging into each other as floating, changing shapes." - Helen Frankenthaler
looked like watercolors
, but were created with oils. To achieve the effect, she heavily diluted her oil paints with turpentine, then dripped them onto an unprimed canvas on the floor, in a brushless technique reminiscent of Jackson Pollock's, called a "soak stain." But where Pollock's paint was often thick and sat on top of the canvas, hers drenched it
, creating a unique, softer work. Ms. Frankenthaler passed away today, at the age of 83, after a long illness. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Dec 27, 2011 -
Don Van Vliet is self-taught. He neither expects allowances for the amateur’s lack of dexterity nor permits any technical deficiency on his own part to limit his scope. Nobody's understanding or forbearance sets limits to what he does - any more than does the fear of going wrong. The lacerations, transgressions, and awkward moments that he introduces are unpredictable, as is their duration; when he takes the figures that confront him and tugs them out of shape, he simultaneously tugs himself out of shape - and out of his own limitations.
- Roberto Ohrt
posted by Trurl
on Dec 14, 2011 -
weaves together a sequence of motion in realtime, using fragments of archival footages that are being collected daily. When a human figure appears on the screen, the sound is deliberately distorted into a slow 'wan wan.' This project, with a theme linking to classification and dependency, shall continue to be developed for a very long time. (Footages featured on this website belong to the public domain. Clips were downloaded from http://www.archive.org/).
posted by bonsai forest
on Oct 30, 2011 -
is a modern artist who shares her time in France and Spain. She says of her collection Sleepdrunk Vademecum
, "The body is made up of a large set of rounded painting formats. Medical instruments, high precision technology, scientific devices, anatomical models, clandestine laboratories and human representation become the object of study and thought. The bizarre represented objects reflect a mixture of past and future, and an ambiguous clinical atmosphere
flows in them. On many of these painted surfaces, a soft cool-cold gradient isolates the represented elements and gives a non-gravitational character
to the compositions." [via
posted by netbros
on Sep 11, 2011 -
How I invented games, and why not
- an essay by game designer Christian Freeling. Between 1979 and 1986 I invented some fourty abstract games, most of which can be found in the ArenA and the Pit. Dameo, HanniBall, YvY and Symple(x) are exceptions. Dameo's invention in 2000, after an incubation period of fifteen years, took two minutes. The invention of HanniBall and YvY in 2009 and Symple and Lhexus in 2010 were 'live' occurences decribed in a late arrival and a final whisper respectively.
Looking back now, from a safe distance, and with the benefit of hindsight, I'd like to clarify how and why I invented these games, and more specifically why not...
posted by Wolfdog
on May 11, 2011 -
The CIA spent 20 years promoting modern art as a propaganda tool:
"We wanted to unite all the people who were writers, who were musicians, who were artists, to demonstrate that the West and the United States was devoted to freedom of expression and to intellectual achievement, without any rigid barriers as to what you must write, and what you must say, and what you must do, and what you must paint, which was what was going on in the Soviet Union. I think it was the most important division that the agency had, and I think that it played an enormous role in the Cold War."
posted by BZArcher
on Nov 1, 2010 -
A new study in Science claims that teaching math is better done by teaching the abstract concepts rather than using concrete examples
. From an article
by the study authors in Science Mag (requires subscription):
If a goal of teaching mathematics is to produce knowledge that students can apply to multiple situations, then presenting mathematical concepts through generic instantiations, such as traditional symbolic notation, may be more effective than a series of "good examples." This is not to say that educational design should not incorporate contextualized examples. What we are suggesting is that grounding mathematics deeply in concrete contexts can potentially limit its applicability. Students might be better able to generalize mathematical concepts to various situations if the concepts have been introduced with the use of generic instantiations.
posted by peacheater
on Apr 26, 2008 -
At the beginning of the Twentieth Century, "International Chess" was the only widely known chess variant in the West. It had its problems. People tried
them. Of course, they could just play xiangqi
instead. There's also janggi
, and the granddaddy of them all, chaturanga
. Perhaps the most refined game in the family, however, is Japanese Chess--shogi
. [more inside]
posted by sonic meat machine
on Feb 15, 2008 -
is a programming language in which programs look like abstract paintings. You can view some sample programs, or if you just like Mondrian, why not make your own with the Mondrian Machine? Or maybe you don't like Mondrian but you do like programming, in which case you can check out other strange languages, such as Petrovich, where you can punish or reward your PC. Finally, if you don't like programming OR Mondrian, have a look at a silly gif of a kitten.
posted by Orange Goblin
on Aug 14, 2006 -
This CNN article
reminded me of something I've been wanting to share with my fellow MeFiers for a long time now: the Storm King Art Center
. There really aren't enough places in the world where you can view dozens of monumental
abstract sculptures on 500 acres of rolling hills and beautiful wooded groves. For those interested in a 3D look (albeit via an obscure plug-in) try these views of a few Storm King sculptures
. So, has anyone else ever been there? Better yet, anyone care to share any other unusual "museums" you've discovered?
posted by Ptrin
on Nov 1, 2002 -
how few pixels are needed to still be "porn"? "...I started experimenting with thumbnails that my mom could tell were porn. Then I started applying filters and such to see if I could obscure the suggestive content into a more abstracted form..."
Has this art touched upon a new art?
posted by jcterminal
on Feb 8, 2002 -
Monkeys are capable of abstract reasoning
according to recent research, which may have "profound implications for the evolution of human intelligence and the stuff that separates homo sapiens from other animals.
Just so long as there are enough bananas to go round, it's OK by me ...
posted by walrus
on Oct 16, 2001 -