#2 (Vulcan)
Photograph — 50in x 35in — 2013

Surface Fictions is a series of digital photographs that use the underlying properties of streaming video to exaggerate motion inside the images. The result is large scale images that appear painterly from afar, but are made up of intricate digital distortions. Characters seems to struggle and interact with digital surfaces, like membranes, liquids or portals.

#3 (Reach)
Photograph — 50in x 35in — 2013

#4 (Maker)
Photograph — 35in x 50in — 2013

This animation is part of a larger multi-faceted installation called Black (W)hole, which is a collaboration with artist Sara Mast, physicist Nico Yunes and composer Jason Bolte. Originally commissioned for the Celebrating Einstein conference at Montana State University, the installation will travel to further venues in the near future. More Information soon...

My contribution to the installation is a dynamically generated model of a black hole and its accretion disc of gas and dust. Also visible is the "Zoom Whirl Orbit" of a second smaller black hole. This spiral shape is specific to the orbits of black holes, and generates gravitational waves. The animation was coded in the Processing programming language.

Supported by grants from NASA & the National Science Foundation.

Animation Stills:
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Installation Shots:
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This animation was built to accompany Isaac Schankler in performing his composition The Familiar Spirit with The Lorelei Ensemble, a choir in Boston MA. The generative visuals move through several 3D environments, created from photographs. The animation responds to Schankler's performance, creating a unique experience each time it is performed. The project was programmed in the Processing programming language.

Composition & Electronics: Isaac Schankler
Lyrics: Amaranth Borsuk
Choir: The Lorelei Enseble

Video To follow...

Blocking the Exits speculates about an increasingly dystopic vision of our future, as expressed through popular film, comics and literature. These works of fiction reflect real conflicts and tension including environmental collapse, disaster and war. The work depicts an apocalyptic world where four characters have the final experience of crumbling pillars of civilization: water, food, energy and communication.

This dynamically-edited, single-channel animation is comprised entirely of still photographs that have been animated through morphing algorithms. It is displayed on a 42in Flatscreen.

Special Thanks to:
Isaac Schankler - Sound Design
Johanna Reed
Jeff Cain
Michael Kontopoulos
Henri Lucas at DMA UCLA
Everyone at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions.


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Dark Matter is a series of three events at Machine Project that explore the theme Dark Matter. Curated By Michael Kontopoulos, Zach Blas and Christopher O'Leary.

Event 03: Video art & Other Experiments

Thursday November 29, 2012
SPECULATIVE presents a screening on Dark Matter, a schizophrenic mix of video art and other experiments. This evening will offer glimpses of Dark Matter through the anonymous materials, inexplicable behaviors and intangible networks found in the work of this eclectic selection of artists:

Ryan Trecartin
Pascual Sisto
Claudia Salamanca
Ian Alan Paul
Johann Lurf
Joe Hamilton
Megan Daalder
Michelle Dizon
Brody Condon
Jennifer Chan

Event 02: 9 Perspectives on Dark Matter

Friday November 2, 2012
Our exploration of Dark Matter will continue this week, with ten artists, researchers, writers and ethnographers approaching the theme of dark matter in ten eclectic, short-form talks.

Modeled after the Pecha Kucha presentation style, each presenter will show 20 slides for 20 seconds each, totaling six minutes. The slides progress on a timer, forcing each speaker to keep up!

Zach Blas
Jeff Cain
Amisha Gadani
Christopher Kardambikis
Michael Kontopoulos
Chandler McWilliams
Lily Nguyen
Christopher O’Leary
Pinar Yoldas

This is the second in a series of events organized by SPECULATIVE that investigate Dark Matter from scientific, artistic, social and subversive dimensions.

Event 01: Dark Matter Double Feature

Friday October 12, 2012
Physicist Jennifer Siegal-Gaskins and artist Ricardo Dominguez will present two perspectives on the invisible, intangible, enigmatic mystery material Dark Matter. Their diverging viewpoints will collide at a stimulating evening exploring hidden facets of our universe and culture.

This evening kicks off a series of events organized by SPECULATIVE that investigate Dark Matter from scientific, artistic, social and subversive dimensions.

Clear Creek is the frigid meltwater that runs through the Ucross Foundation Ranch.
This site specific performance is captured through 160 photographs over 10 minutes. The body is brought close to hypothermia and total exhaustion while performing simple gestures of survival and ritual.

Please Visit the Exhibition Website: s-p-e-c-u-l-a-t-i-v-e.info

SPECULATIVE is a curatorial project which was exhibited at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibits from June 16, 2011 to August 28th, 2011. Developed with co-curator Zach Blas, the show brings together 9 projects which explore speculation as a political and creative practice.

The exhibition included a performance event on June 30th and a panel discussion on July 28th.

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Exhibiting Artists Include:
Casey Alt
Zach Blas
Jeff Cain
Micha Caredenas
Xarene Eskandar
Michael Kontopoulos
Elle Mehrmand
Christopher O'Leary
Claudia Salamanca
Pinar Yoldas

A catalogue was published including writing from most artists in the show, and 6 guest writers.
Purchase a copy at Amazon

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Future Times is a data sculpture created in collaboration with Casey Alt. The work consists of a stack of 100 15 inch-square acrylic plates with each plate representing one year from 1908 to 2008. Each plate has 100 holes that correspond to the top 100 most frequent noun phrases associated with the phrase "in the future" for each year according to Google News Archive, Google Scholar, and Google Blog search results. The diameter of each hole varies with the relative frequency of each term. For example, in the plate for 1945, the hole for the term "war" has a large diameter since many people were making predictions about the future of warfare. The plates are each 3/8" thick and are stacked vertically on top of 4 small plastic supports with the oldest plate (1908) at the bottom and the most recent one (2008) on the top. The entire height of the piece (with supports) is 40". A horizontal beam of white light randomly walks up and down one side of the sculpture, illuminating one plate at a time.

Future Times was prototyped in 2007, and completed in 2009.

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Dust is a dynamically generated animation which follows a flow of particles through various stages of scale, light and motion. This work was informed by the ever-growing scope of human vision. As we gaze deeper into the nature of matter, and farther into the reaches of space, we have generated a visual language associated with these fantastic notions beyond our natural senses.

Dust utilizes custom software written in the Processing programming language. Various parameters are algorithmically determined within an architecture of possibility. It was created to be performed to generative or live music. Dust was first created in 2006, then remade in 2009.

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Giant-Sized Issues is an ongoing series of performative videos, photographs and installations. The project borrows the notion of super-power from popular comic book culture as an appealing but hopeless form of escapism. Part of a broader practice focused on speculative fiction, Giant-Sized Issues depicts super-bodies and other-worlds that both admit their impossibility while imaging other potentials. Through simple lighting techniques and digital processes an image of super-power is created but ultimately (and purposefully) it fails to construct a seamless illusion. Each piece attempts to create a tension between the appeal of suspended disbelief and the inevitable failure to escape the real world. The series is divided into three volumes which were shot beginning in 2008.

Volume 3 was created while in residence at the Atlantic Center for the Arts in Florida during the summer of 2009.


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Untitled (Army), 2009
Digital Image

Untitled (Mouth), 2009
Digital Image