Mutator 1 + 2: Evolutionary Art by William Latham
7 Sept – 13 Oct
Wed – Sun, 11am – 5pm
NEWS FOR WILLIAM LATHAM
23 April – 25 May 2014
Preview: Friday 6 Sept 6 – 8.30 pm
PRESENTED BY PHOENIX BRIGHTON AS PART OF BRIGHTON DIGITAL FESTIVAL AND SUPPORTED BY A GRANT FROM ARTS COUNCIL ENGLAND
William Latham was one of the first UK artists in the 80’s to create computer art, and he rapidly gained an international reputation as a pioneer in the field. His work blends organic imagery and computer animation, using software modeled upon the processes of evolution. Starting with a simple shape, Latham introduces random ‘mutations’ of a form in order to generate increasingly complex three-dimensional creations that resemble fantastical, futuristic organisms. Mutator 1 + 2 is Latham’s first major exhibition in the UK in over twenty years, and includes his early hand-drawn work, large computer generated Cibachrome prints, video art and his most recent interactive projected imagery that explores and embodies evolutionary processes, physical and virtual space.
Trained as an artist, Latham moved into the world of computing through his work at IBM, and during this time collaborated with mathematician Stephen Todd to develop a methodology for mutating and evolving forms. Their Mutator code allows designers to ‘breed’ designs in the same way as Latham generates art, pulling us into the virtual laboratories of artificial life. The manipulation of the natural world by humans is a theme which runs though much of Latham’s work; in fact he likens himself to a gardener who breeds organic art by exploiting and amplifying mutations in order to create new, hybrid forms, a process he describes as “an evolution driven by aesthetics”.
After working in the computer games industry for thirteen years, Latham returned to research and academia as Professor of Computer Art at Goldsmiths, University of London, where he works with Professor Frederic Fol Leymarie; he is currently collaborating with Lawrence Kelly on software to explore the world of protein folding and scientific visualization. His recent interactive video projections and web based programmes draw upon his most recent work undertaken at Goldsmiths, and they allow viewers to participate in and witness the process of evolution in a direct and intuitive way, whether this takes place within a gallery setting in Brighton or online from across the world.
Sue Gollifer (curator for ACM SIGGRAPH international computer graphics, ArCade 1-V11, and director of ISEA International Headquarters) brings Latham’s creative work from over three decades to Phoenix Brighton as part of the Brighton Digital Festival in 2013. Situated in a large artist-led organization with over a hundred studios, the gallery is a suitable breeding ground for work which pushes the boundaries and makes connections between artforms and disciplines, and Latham’s output perfectly fits with this setting. As part of Mutator 1 + 2, Gollifer has commissioned the artist to create a large scale Retro-Form Synth drawing directly on the gallery walls. This piece will link together the various aspects of Latham’s unique career and serve as an entry point for an impressive body of work which reveals the scope and range of this groundbreaking artist.
ASSOCIATED ACTIVITIES AND EVENTS:
Running alongside the exhibition, a special programme of talks, workshops and performances for Brighton Digital Festival celebrates some of the most innovative and internationally renowned artists working with digital technology in the city today.
MUTATOR 1 + 2
ARTIST AS GARDENER: TALK BY WILLIAM LATHAM
MUTATOR 1 + 2: COMPUTER ART & SCIENCE
EVOLUTIONARY DRAWING WORKSHOP
PUBLIC SCREENING AND WORKSHOPS AT THE LEVEL
LIVE CODING WORKSHOP
BRIGHTON DIGITAL FESTIVAL AT PHOENIX BRIGHTON
Coinciding with our flagship exhibition of ‘Mutator 1+2: Evolutionary Art by William Latham’, Phoenix Brighton’s programme for Brighton Digital Festival celebrates some of the most innovative and internationally renowned artists working with digital technology in the city today.
OF THE SPHERES
BALLAD OF SKINNY LATTES AND VINTAGE CLOTHING
THE BARON’S ART SCHOOL PERFORMANCE (6pm)
THE BARON’S ART SCHOOL PERFORMANCE (8pm)
OPEN SOURCING THE HEART
GUERILLA VIDEO ART