Content-aware concrete
April 21, 2020 3:48 PM   Subscribe

Content-aware concrete
I made a new website for my art practice, and, while my last show and newest work is textile-based, I thought MetaFilter might like my 2015 exhibition Screen Wall, featuring concrete breeze blocks I designed by (mis)using Photoshop's Content-Aware Fill.

I used Content-Aware Fill to create a large field of wonky-warpy screen wall block motifs and wrote a small PHP script to cut it into block-sized designs, which I traced in Illustrator and had water-jet cut from EVA, supplying both the mould materials and foam-rubber positives that visitors to the show could (and did) play with.

The show also included rubbings and photograms made using laser-cut bamboo tiles and an animation (strobe warning) consisting of 2000 image frames made using Audacity in place of an image editor.

Today the most of the blocks are in the gallery director's front yard (he also did the masonry), seen here, but I kept enough to make a rain barrel stand someday.

(Alternate secure link if that's an issue or if the domain isn't resolving for you yet)
Role: artist
posted by wreckingball (3 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

very cool, I love that kind of experiment, what's going on with the hardcover book pic, that was the only one i didn't understand, i'm interested in knowing what is going on there
posted by 4notherOnlineUserName at 2:34 PM on April 22, 2020 [1 favorite]

I should have included a link to the books page, where there at least more photos! The book just collects the "long list" of block motifs that I generated, in order (the ones I cast are circled). There are also some random arrangements of the block designs, and a few schematic diagrams.

I was interested in the conflict between the "random" or "algorithmic" generation of the motifs and my own totally unsystematic process of choosing which ones to actually produce. Since I couldn't think of a way to resolve it entirely, I figured I would at least document it in some way.

But mostly I just had more designs than I could possibly use and wanted to collect them somehow. (Taking inspiration also from work like Allan McCollum's Shapes Project, which I've always liked, and this book of Japanese Design Motifs that I had as a kid).
posted by wreckingball at 4:16 PM on April 22, 2020

I like those blocks a lot! The whole installation looks amazing!
posted by moonmilk at 7:57 PM on April 22, 2020 [1 favorite]

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