The Made in NY Media Center is proud to present Frame Null Abyss – A Decade of A N F, a new retrospective of work by Andreas Nicolas Fischer.
Over the last ten years, Fischer’s work has evolved from a place of abstraction into more pointed, guided experiential work with an emphasis on narrative. Early works, such as the Drone series, are overflowing with color and seem to be primarily concerned with technique. Fluid dynamics simulations and particle systems combine to form abstract worlds that coalesce and disperse in response to both sound and the whims of the artist.
Later works, however, begin to incorporate fears about our relationship with technology, the workings of society, and our increasing unhappiness. While many creative technologists are contemplating and exploring similar themes, Fischer brings innovative visual and structural sensibilities to this familiar discourse. The result is at once visually arresting and philosophically thought-provoking, with horrifying implications.
His Computer Visions series begins ominously with a quote from Karl Marx rendered as white text on a gray background before shifting to a familiar particle system. But that familiarity is quickly discarded as the imagery transforms into lines of expressionless automatons and the text takes on a more subjective, narrative tone, contemplating the nature of what it means to be human and what it means to evolve, before eventually positing that our eventual obsolescence might not be a bad thing.
The second installment of Computer Visions continues to see the artist growing not only his technique but his structural and philosophical leanings, as well. An onyx carcass on a beach gives way to a walk through a desecrated landscape with imagery on disembodied screens as a voice plays psychiatrist and questions the moral and ethical ramifications of fame, wealth, pharmaceuticals, and even our very existence before closing by saying, “remember, I’ll always love you.”
Throughout this creative evolution, Fischer has maintained a sense of visual playfulness that contrasts nicely with the deep and often dark philosophical questioning that underpins his work. Bright colors and whimsical physics simulations serve to usher the unsuspecting viewer into Fischer’s worlds, lulling them into a state of complacency before turning those worlds upside down and inside out with philosophical inquiries and existential dread. But these are not depressing works – they force viewers to confront the most difficult questions human beings have to contemplate and one is left with a sense of advancement, of being changed for the better after having faced our own mortality.
This retrospective collects existing works by Fischer in addition to a new, site-specific generative piece for the Media Center’s 360-degree projection.
The show was curated by Thomas Rotenberg. Photography by Chris Woebken.
Hyperschwarm is a series of 3 triple channel generative media installations, each consisting of 3 4 minute videos in 4k UHD resolution. Hyperschwarm is an update of the Schwarm series, which uses the same generative system with the difference that the color composition is being generated from within instead of being pre-defined. The colors are re-generated at specific intervals during the execution of the software, shifted in hue over time and faded over the last set that was drawn onto the canvas. The installation is evolving slowly over time, revealing new colors through the particles that flow across the canvas. Each set has 3 different scales at which the points flow across the drawing surface at varying opacities.
Megaschwarm is a series of 3 triple channel generative media installations, each consisting of 3 4 minute videos in 4k UHD resolution. It is an update of the Schwarm series, which uses the same generative system with the difference that the color composition is being generated from within instead of being pre-defined. The colors are re-generated at specific intervals during the execution of the software, shifted in hue over time and faded over the last set that was drawn onto the canvas. The installation is evolving slowly over time, revealing new colors through the particles that flow across the canvas. Each set has 3 different scales and densities at which the points flow across the drawing surface at varying opacities.
Void Vaporwave is a series of ultra-high-resolution digital artworks generated with our custom generative software based on the void series. It is a microgenre of electronic music and an Internet image that developed in the mid-2010s. The style is characterized by its allotment of the 1980s and 1990s state of mind music styles, for example, smooth jazz, lift music, R&B, and parlor music, regularly examining or controlling tracks by means of slashed and screwed strategies and different impacts. Its encompassing subculture is here and there related with an uncertain or humorous interpretation of customer free enterprise and popular culture, and will, in general, be described by a nostalgic or surrealist commitment with the well-known diversion, innovation and publicizing of earlier decades. It additionally joins early Internet symbolism, late 1990s website architecture, glitch craftsmanship, anime, 3D-rendered articles, and cyberpunk tropes in its spread fine art and music recordings.
Pitch Festival commissioned a video work for their 2019 festival set outside Ararat in the Grampians, Victoria.
Ten large format high resolution LED screens arranged back to back as 5 totems were installed on-site creating a space for people to move amongst the glowing panels. When approached from a distance towards the main stage the work appears as a single surface.
Nic Hamilton coordinated six other international video artists to make works for the festival to ensure visual arts were represented alongside the broadly international music program. Joe Hamilton, Lucy Benson, Michael Tan, Ezra Miller, Tristan Jalleh and Andreas Nicolas Fischer each made site-specific works displayed across the 4 days of the pitch festival.
Photography by Pat Hamilton
The fine gentlemen at Brig.ht Paris liased this custom video installation programming at Banque LCL in Paris. A curated selection of A N F video and software works was shown.
Hypervoid X is new high-density procedural pop art c-prints based on the void series, which were generated over a period of days with our custom procedural software written in Processing. The colors are chosen to evoke associations to consumer products, neon lighting, and package design, similar to the artists of the 70s and 80s.
Pop art is a development that risen in the United Kingdom and the United States during the mid-to-late-1950s. The development displayed a test to customs of compelling artwork by including symbolism from well known and mass culture, for example, promoting, comic books and everyday social items. One of its points is to utilize pictures of well known (rather than elitist) culture in craftsmanship, accentuating the worn-out or kitschy components of any culture, frequently using irony. It is likewise connected with the specialists’ utilization of mechanical methods for multiplication or rendering systems. In pop craftsmanship, the material is now and again outwardly expelled from its known setting, confined, or joined with inconsequential material.
Among the early specialists that formed the pop craftsmanship development were Eduardo Paolozzi and Richard Hamilton in Britain, and Larry Rivers, Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns among others in the United States. Pop art is broadly translated as a response to the then-predominant thoughts of dynamic expressionism, just as a development of those ideas. Due to its use of discovered items and pictures, it is like Dada. Pop art and moderation are viewed as art developments that go before postmodern craftsmanship or are the absolute most punctual instances of postmodern art themselves.
Megavoid is a series of 3 triple channel generative media installations, each consisting of 3 4 minute videos in 4k UHD resolution. It is an extension of the VOID series, which uses the same generative system with the difference that the color composition is being generated from within instead of being pre-defined. The colors are re-generated at specific intervals during the execution of the software, shifted in hue over time and faded over the last set that was drawn onto the canvas. The installation is evolving slowly over time, revealing new colors through the particles that flow across the canvas.
Many developments in the history of everything have started out as a mimesis of one kind or another. The arm became the lever while the horse became the steam engine and the mind became the computing machine. At some moment then typically comes a sort of inflection point at which the mimic surpasses its model: suddenly, there were hundreds of horses in the space of one. Often, this leads to other effects, ones much less obvious, unintended and almost impossible to foresee. Those horses, history tells us, facilitated a fundamental change in the urban landscape of North America; a change that came with a universe of social, ecological and economic transformations, not all of them for the better.
Cognitive technologies are likely to follow a similar pattern, although their mode of mimicry is much less linear. Consequently, inflection points may differ: instead of being an analog of our own thinking apparatus, they started off as apparatuses of logic. Running mechanically at first, such as the Antikythera mechanism, Charles Babbage’s difference engine or Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz’s stepped reckoner, those machines could perform as many simple calculations as mechanical resistance (the arm) would allow for. The rise of electrical power and the vast paradigm shift it initiated then changed the mode of resistance into one of scale and integration: logical formations, materialized into ever-shrinking circuits, now powered by an invisible force at the speed of light. A sense of inflection followed: what if our souls fundamentally work the same way? But it turned out to be a mirage: our brains are not digital computers, just as little as the steam engine is a horse.
After more decades of trying to construct an apparatus that can think, we may be finally witnessing the fruits of those efforts: machines that know. That is to say, not only machines that can measure and look up information, but ones that seem to have a qualitative understanding of the world. A neural network trained on faces does not only know what a human face looks like, it has a sense of what a face is. Although the algorithms that produce such para-neuronal formations are relatively simple, we do not fully understand how they work. A variety of research labs have also been successfully training such nets on functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scans of living brains, enabling them to effectively extract images, concepts, thoughts from a person’s mind. This is where the inflection likely happens, as a double one: a technology whose workings are not well understood, qualitatively analyzing an equally unclear natural formation with a degree of success.
Andreas N. Fischer’s work Computer Visions II seems to be waiting just beyond this cusp, where two kinds of knowing beings meet in a psychotherapeutic session of sorts, consistent with the ideas that Joseph Weizenbaum first raised half a century ago with his software ELIZA. Yet, in Fischer’s interpretation, this relationship presents itself as a peculiar clash of surreal images and a voice tending to the very human. It is perhaps no coincidence then, that some of the images, particularly the carcass of an animal, are reminiscent of Werner Herzog’s 1971 film Fata Morgana, which depicts the Sahara and Sahel deserts to the sound of Lotte Eisner’s voice reciting the Mayan creation myth.
Like Herzog, Fischer created the images first and the voice-over followed after, almost in an effort to decode them and with them offer an experimental analysis of a future to come. Herzog’s film, after all, was initially intended as a science fiction narrative and only later turned into an exegesis of the origin of the world. In both films, the images serve as surreal divining rods to explore the nature of dreams and visions. “What kind of life is it?” asks the therapist. We do not hear the answer, but perhaps we have not heard the question right either: in a time of talk, simultaneously, of both the Anthropocene and the possibility of a posthuman condition, should the question not rather be what the dreams are, at their base of bases? And would it not be only fitting if—after passing the epochal inflection point of a machine that truly knows—its first words would be: “hi there, do you want me play back some of your dreams for you?”
Sascha Pohflepp, September 2017
KARST II 01; C-print 160 × 120 cm
KARST II 01; Detail 01
KARST II 01; Detail 02
KARST II 01; Detail 03
KARST II 02; C-print 160 × 120 cm
KARST II 02; Detail 01
KARST II 02; Detail 02
KARST II 02; Detail 03
KARST II 03; C-print 160 × 120 cm
KARST II 03; Detail 01
KARST II 03; Detail 02
KARST II 03; Detail 03
V0ID VIII 01; Installation View
V0ID VIII 01; C-print; 160cm × 120cm
V0ID VIII 02; Installation View
V0ID VIII 02; C-print; 160cm × 120cm
V0ID VIII 03; Installation View
V0ID VIII 03; C-print; 160cm × 120cm
V0ID VII 01; Installation View
V0ID VII 01; C-print; 160cm × 120cm
V0ID VII 02; Installation View
V0ID VII 02; C-print; 160cm × 120cm
V0ID VII 03; Installation View
V0ID VII 03; C-print; 160cm × 120cm
V0ID VII 04; Installation View
V0ID VII 04; C-print; 160cm × 120cm
V0ID VII 05; Installation View
V0ID VII 05; C-print; 160cm × 120cm
Single Channel Video; 4k UHD 3840 x 2160; 4:00; 30fps
Schwarm 2k14 I
Schwarm 2k14 II
Schwarm 2k14 III
V0ID V 01 Installation View
V0ID V 01
V0ID V 02 Installation View
V0ID V 02
V0ID V 03 Installation View
V0ID V 03
V0ID IV 01 Installation View
V0ID IV 01
V0ID IV 02 Installation View
V0ID IV 02
V0ID IV 03 Installation View
V0ID IV 03
V0ID III 01
V0ID III 01
V0ID III 02
V0ID III 02
V0ID III 03
V0ID III 03
Photo by Christopher Bauder
Samsung Electronics, the global TV industry leader, is elevating its presence at IFA 2016 with a special exhibition designed by a team of emerging German artists. The installation, entitled The Origin of Quantum Dot, showcases the beauty of Samsung’s SUHD TVs with Quantum dot display, while incorporating video, lighting and musical elements.
The Origin of Quantum Dot is a stained glass-inspired art installation designed by Andreas Nicolas Fischer, Schnellebuntebilder, Christopher M. Bauder and kling klang klong. The artists came together from different creative backgrounds – including sound, media art and sculpture – to build the unique work of art. The piece contains 45 SUHD TVs and 9,000 shards of stained glass.
“We designed The Origin of Quantum Dot exhibition, the largest we’ve ever produced, so that visitors at IFA can directly experience the visual excellence of the premium SUHD TV with Quantum dot display,” said HS Kim, President of the Visual Display Business at Samsung Electronics. “We are proud to have partnered with such talented, local artists to bring this visual concept to life.”
Photo by Christopher Bauder
Photo by Christopher Bauder
A dialog between an artificial intelligence and a human.
Second Nature is a series of video loops which show an alternate reality layered on top of our own. During a return to the Alps in the south of Munich where I grew up, I took walks in the forest, filming them from my own point of view and recording ambient sounds.
The video footage was then analyzed and a virtual camera was calculated which reconstructs my movements. Then, working around the path of the camera in space, the environment was created only to cover the field of vision.
The vegetation is an obviously ficticious one, where tropical leaves populate northern European trees. A fern’s structure was misappropriated and given banana leaves. The plants and soil have a dull metallic finish. The POV perspective and gait recognizable in the camerawork shows the influence of first person shooter games, while its enemies and objectives remain absent or unknown. There is no clear narrative or purpose other than the wish to be transported to this world, creating a false memory of a place that does not exist.
Credits Extension of the Schwarm Code by the multitalented Mr Pazos
Computer art is an art form in which computers play a role in the process or final product, such as display of artwork. Generative art is at the same time more specific and more encompassing than computer art. Generative art refers to art that in whole or part has been created with the use of an autonomous system. The autonomous system can be a computer, but more broadly an autonomous system is non-human and can independently determine features of an artwork that would otherwise require decisions to be made directly by an artist. In many cases, the artist, or human creator, can claim that the generative system represents their own artistic idea. There are, however, cases in which the system takes on the role of creator entirely.
What is Generative Art?
The late 1950s saw artists and designers begin to experiment with mechanical devices and analog computers. This served as a precursor to the work of the early digital pioneers who would follow in the 1960s. Interestingly enough these early digital pioneers were not artists or designers but engineers and scientists, as they had access to more powerful computing resources at university scientific research labs. A. Michael Doll, an engineer, and professor at the University of Southern California, was the first person to program a digital computer solely for artistic purposes. His later computer generated patterns simulated the visual effects of paintings by artists such as Piet Mondrian and Bridget Riley.
One of the challenges faced by early generative artists using computers was the limitation of output devices. The primary source in operation at the time was the plotter, a mechanical device that holds a pen or brush with its movements controlled by a computer.