May 14- June 5, 2011

May 14- June 5


Cellular Automata Series (Scape #7), oil and synthetic polymer on canvas, 40” x 40", 2011Room 1: Taney Roniger
Cellular Automata"This series of paintings and works on paper is inspired by a species of computer-generated images known as cellular automata. Used principally by scientists as a way of visualizing dynamic processes, cellular automata are generated when sets of rules—often quite simple in nature—are fed into powerful computers and allowed to run through millions of iterations at high speeds, the whole process being enacted visually on the screen. As the process unfolds, the arrays of “cells” (simple black and white squares) morph into dense fields with complex patterns and configurations that cannot have been foreseen by the initial input. Because of these emergent properties—the strange features that appear wholly unpredicted by the rules—and what they reveal about the structure of complexity and chaos, these images are used in the study of systems (biological, ecological, social, etc.).

At the work’s conceptual core are questions about the relationship between the analog world—the continuous, seemingly-unbroken world we experience with our senses—and the digital world presented to us by computers. Can computer models, with their language of separate, discrete units (pixels, binary numbers, etc.), accurately reflect the real world—or is there a fundamental gap between the digital and the real, the virtual and the actual, that can never be closed? In my paintings, the tensions between the discrete marks that make up the patterns and configurations and the seamless, unbroken ground reflect this concern."

-Excerpt from Taney Roniger's statement on Cellular Automata.concatenations.org