Gladbeck menu  | ArchiveMain Menu History | Search  |  Contact

The following statement was included with the 1993 submission to Computerkunst in Gladbeck, Germany. This statement includes fundamental ideas that have dominated my work since the mid 1980,s.  Short statements built around this core were used in many submissions throughout the 1990's. RV.

  One of two shown in Computerkunst 1994.


Intentions. My approach to art holds a reverence for the materials of earth and a sense of wonder about most things including circuit boards and computer languages. I strive to create well crafted works with iconic qualities that evoke mystery and act as signs pointing to some greater reality. The texture and quality of materials are carefully chosen and transformed in the process. For me, the work should have an aura that draws the casual viewer to pause for a moment recognizing that the work embodies a human endeavor going beyond material concerns.

The Work. Networks of lines, occasional color planes and brush strokes are generated by the artist's code. For each stage in its evolution this code has been used to generate a new series of works - Pathway, Gaia, Scarab, Apocalypse and Ezekiel, with the more recent series being "illuminated" pages reminiscent of medieval manuscripts. Each page is plotted on rag paper; some are enhanced with a touch of gold or silver leaf, applied by hand. However the design elements illuminated with gold  are always code generated and machine plotted.

All works have been executed with a multipen plotter coupled to a PC. The plotter draws from an array of technical pens loaded with inks mixed in the studio. All brush strokes are plotted using Chinese brushes adapted to the machine's drawing arm. The program code is written in Basic with plotter protocols in the Digital Microprocessor/Plotting Language. 

Structure. Many works include code driven improvisations based on a single initiating stroke. This stroke, generated by randomly cast control points, can be seen in the brush strokes. Software procedures provide parameters to create reflecting or mirror strokes on either or both axes or none at all.  For works with glyph-like "scripts" the  headers and initials are derived algorithmically from  the same set of relations; thus a "self-similarity" permeates the whole. More recent routines allow for transformations of form from one set of control points to another.

Content and Meaning.  The Diamond Lake Apocalypse pieces may be viewed as diagrams or visual analogues to the coded procedures with which they are made.  The essential character of the finished work is derived from the "form-generating-procedure" or "algorithm" acting as genotype. For this reason one could say that the finished work is an epiphany (manifestation) of the artist's code.

Each work celebrates its code, especially the recursive routines which shaped its character. Parameter controlled recursive loops provide an awesome means for visualizing form-growing concepts. Such routines provide access to an infinity of visual worlds never before seen by the human eye. It is noteworthy that such procedures hold much in common with processes associated with crystallization and genetics.

These Epigenetic Works invite us to savor both the beauty and the mystery of their coded procedures - not so much for their stark logic as for the grace and poetry they yield.  The procedures provide a window on unseen processes shaping mind and matter. By doing so they become icons illuminating the mysterious nature of Earth and Cosmos.

Roman Verostko, Minneapolis, June 1993.

Epigenetic. The term epigenesis, borrowed from biology, refers to the process whereby a mature plant is grown from a seed or genotype (DNA). By analogy, the art work (phenotype) is "grown" from the software (genotype).  The procedures for "growing" the work may be viewed as "epigenetic". The code (genotype) for each series of my works is capable of generating a family of forms with each being "one of a kind". This process was outlined in my paper "Epigenetic Painting: Software as Genotype" (TISEA (Utrecht), 1988) and published in Leonardo in 1990.

 Gladbeck menu | ArchiveMain MenuHistory | Search  |  Contact