Artwork presentation for GA2004


Pascal Dombis

e-mail: dombis@dombis.com




SQUARE OUT is a video installation based on iterative algorithm, that shows the transformation of a square figure into decorative, chaotic and ultimately monochrome patterns. It explores new visual territories where order, chaos, square, curves or monochrome are not separated elements, but rather linked constituents that interact each others.



In the beginning of the 90's - through my discovery of fractal geometry and its incredible possibilities for computer generated geometries - I gradually got rid of all traditional painting and sculpture material and concentrated on exploring a new conceptual space which emerged through self-programmed iterative hyper-structures.


Now I methodically use generative hyper-structures to create inhumanely complex pictorial space in which I try to addresses a miscellaneous collection of network issues such as complexity, perpetuation, enrichment and chaos. By commencing with a singular and uncomplicated geometric constituent (a lonely curve or a diminutive portion of an arc) and by maniacally computationally reproducing it, I produce intensely elaborated optic structures which I try to synthesize into abstract digital wall-print fields or video installation.



SQUARE OUT is a video installation on the “chaosification” of a square figure. By replicating the same curve element along a regular generative process, structures that contain resembling Euclidian geometric shapes, like squares, are being generated. Isolating one square pattern, I gradually introduce randomness in the growth process. The square slowly starts to disappear into decorative pattern, and then its constitutive parts proliferate in self-generated chaotic rhythm and ultimately turn into in a complete monochrome detail.


The installation is composed of loop video DVD projection on 4 aligned screens. At the beginning, the 4 video show exactly the same image: the square pattern. Then, with the introduction of randomness in the generative growth process, each square slowly start to disappear into its own chaotic patterns, and ultimately in a monochrome image.


Because the algorithm uses random seeds, there are potentially an infinite number of video sequences. For the installation, I just processed a limited number so that the images projected on the screen are all different. Just the beginning of the sequence (square) and the end (monochrome pattern) are the same.


By moving back and forth from square to monochrome thru chaotic patterns, the installation created a pulsation rhythm between order and disorder, rational and irrational.This rhythm is reinforce by the alignment of the 4 screens that create a kind of single and landscape image,composed by 4 animations.





New digital technologies – I believe – favour the complexity and reintroduce baroque into our contemporary life. Instead of linear and simple world, we are more and more facing multi dimensional, networked and elliptical environments.


SQUARE OUT addresses such contemporary complexity paradigms. Complexity does not simply mean complicated, but rather the space created by the relationships between different elements. Hence, in SQUARE OUT video installation, order, chaos, square, curves or monochrome are not separated or independent elements, but rather linked constituents that interact each others.


What I am investigating as an artist is not the formal game of destructuring a square and obtaining nice color movements on the screen. It is more to explore new territories of contemporary realities, based on non linearity ad recursiveness. New computer based technology can help us to explore such new territories. I try to use the computer for its original and primitive essence: a powerful computational tool that can incessantly reproduce simple calculation ad nauseum. In fact, I like to know that my generative algorithms do not relate to the latest technology and could have been written 50 years ago. Indeed I see my iterative computational methodology as a kind of Arte Povera within new technology, an irrational use of the computer technology.