Can artistic innovation be inspired and guided on knowledge taken from the field of plant genome evolution? I explored this question by subjecting a glitch artwork to processes analogous to those shaping the evolution of the maize genome, that are whole genome duplication (WGD), subgenome bias
fractionation and genome dominance, respectively. The mosaic composition of glitch art provided me with a comparable visual reference to the mosaicism found in plant genomes that emerged from multiple rounds of polyploidy (genome doubling) events throughout the history of many plant species. The ability to emulate evolutionary processes shaping the genome of plants and communicate them in non-scientific form through glitch art and computer programming allowed me for the visual perceptualization and transmission of genomic concepts to society. Furthermore, the work presented here is an extension of the previously conceptualized artistic form of expression that I’ve coined with the name of GAGAISM (from Genomic and Geometric AbstractionISM) as the intersection of genomics, art and computer programming. By taking concepts from plant genome evolution as raw material for novel avenues of visuality, gave the work a conceptual framework that bridged the analytical and creative domains of human endeavors. In fact, the ideology driving the efforts of glitch artists and scientists is not that much different when it comes to coerce technological and biological systems into error creation as new forms of abstraction. In this particular case, I transited from complexity to simplicity as the end result were images reduced to a pattern of white lines on a black background. Visual simplicity as the end result of scientific reductionism is the strength of the work briefly described here.
Martin Calvino is fascinated with the use of computers as an expressive medium. He aims at applying coding and visual aesthetics principles to create engaging and meaningful artworks. He is a Senior Research Assistant at the School of Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong; and previously attended the Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) at Tisch School of the Arts, New York University. He holds degrees in Plant Molecular Genetics from Rutgers University (PhD) and Tsukuba University (MS), and in Molecular Biology from the University of the Republic of Uruguay (BS). He conducted studies and works under the sponsorship of prestigious fellowships such as Fulbright (USA) and Monbukagakusho (Japan), and in 2012 received the Eileen Brennan Graduate Research Award from the department of Plant Biology & Pathology at Rutgers in recognition for his scientific output. Martin’s interest and work focuses on the integration of Art & Science, New Media Art and Tango, and artistic applications of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence.
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