May 2, 2009
Bitquid and Fluid Sculpture

This post relates back to others I’ve posted here including Dept. of Rhythmanalysis: Dupage, EPROM, Taiwa-Hensokuki, Relay Works, Line, Vacuum Filaments, Earphones, Distant Views and Crash and Bloom which all employ a certain manner/style/technique of visually illustrating their use of connections/lines/networks.

As Jean-no pointed out in a comment on the last post the STRP festival happened in Eindhoven in the first two weeks of April and hosted a wealth of interesting events. While I didn’t manage to get there I’ve been looking at a lot of the work online and have to agree with Jean-no that Bitquid (image above) by Jeroen Holthuis seems to have been the undiscovered gem in the exhibition. The artist explains the work on his website.

In my thesis I tried to explore the relationships between what I like to call our ‘parallel worlds’, or our digital and analogue environment. Bitquid explores the relation between these environments by trying to transform digital information to a new analogue equivalent. The system transforms bits in atoms. It therefore plays with the imaginary boundary where digital information stops and the analogue world begins…Bitquid is a complex system of about 800 meters of transparent hoses through which digital information will flow in in the form of ‘analogue’ fluids. In a really darknened and quiet surrounding this information becomes visible and alive because of the use of an fluorescent component in the fluid. With blacklights this fluid lightens up in a green/yellow color. Everytime one of the 32 valves open you hear clicking sound and at that moment one bit becomes an collection of atoms. In the fluid the digital information is still present, though it will be transformed by our analogue environment leaving a stain on the information. In this world the transfer of information isn’t perfect and is subject to interpretation and deterioration. This is the beauty of this world. Bitquid tries to explore a way of making digital information subject to analogue influences. What will have happened with this information after being transformed from bits to atoms? Is it still recognizable?

It seems that thinking about the use of liquid as a means of visualising movement/flows/connections/networks is current. Fluid Sculpture by Charlie Bucket (image above, video below) is a prototype for a work to be shown later in May at the Maker Faire and follows on from numerous other experiments with fluid based works.

Bitquid originally seen at Les Derniers des Blogs.

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