Piet Mondrian’s “Composition with Lines” (1917) is one of my favourite artworks, and in searching for a print online, I came across the art of Professor A. Michael Noll.
Noll pioneered generative digital art in the 1960s, and in one of his experiments he digitally recreated “Composition with Lines”. Participants were asked whether they could determine the computer-generated version from the original, and which version they preferred. Only 28% were able to correctly identify the computer generated version, and 59% actually preferred it.
This led me to more of Noll’s work, and I was drawn to his early experiments drawing patterns programmed with Fortran. I particularly like this note:
"Pattern Seven" was supposed to have been a series of randomly-placed prolate cycloids but apparently something went amiss.Patterns by 7090
In his paper, Noll outlines the algorithm used to create Pattern Two (below), and I thought it’d be fun to replicate it on the web.
… and here’s my replica:
Thankfully I didn’t have to set up and CRT or a 35mm film camera (although perhaps that would’ve been fun?!) but there was a bit of wrangling to get it looking right. Perhaps I could run an experiment to see which people prefer?