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Life in Patterns

A blog focussing in on one of my favorite works, my self made robot artist. Or as some of you might think of it: a badly made line plotter.

Splinters 2019 - Kuurne
Olaf Verhaeghe

Olaf Verhaeghe

This weekend my robot and I were invited to Kuurne. An old abandoned flax factory was the setting for a free arts and music festival: ‘Splinters’. We set up shop in one of their spaces, this was when Olaf Verhaeghe shot this beautiful picture.

The drawings that get to go to these expositions are carefully curated and selected out of the multitude of pieces it has made in the past two years. Obviously the robot does not strike gold in every piece he makes. My personal estimates are a 10% succesrate…
But the simple act of him drawing on location is the real crowdpleaser here, not the finished pieces in their final, static, dead forms. Especially the young (or the young of mind) are drawn to it, seeing how they are able to get their parents in the same playful mindset is heartwarming.

best regards,
Rien.

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Rien Coorevits
Solo exhibition at Spikkerelle

Me and Jeroen were placing drawings from Life in Patterns. Spikkerelle invited me for an exhibition at their space last April. Glad for the invitation but at the time I was a little nervous…

Life in Patterns 235
Rien Coorevits
1000 Patronen

So, While developing the robot I could easily keep track of all the drawings he made, there was a time and place to name each plot and be conscious about the collaboration. But when he started to go to expositions - sometimes for over a month - he would come back with a pile of drawings, each the product of a days worth of performance. I would not know in what circumstances the drawings were made, what happened to him or what forces impacted him during the drawing. So naming them became irrelevant. The only person who cared about the names was me, and with me not being there while the drawings were performed there was no further story or context to be given to the work by adding a name to it. The robot certainly doesn’t care about names, so henceforth the works were date stamped to keep them apart and - most importantly for both me and the robot - aligned through time.

If a tree falls in the forest and there’s none there to hear, did it make a sound?

Rien Coorevits
update


So this happened, one of my works now hangs inside someones house… In Heule no less!

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Rien Coorevits
Life in Patterns

Life In Patterns is an installation I was able to complete with the help of vzw WIT.h. For four months I made use of their exposition space to develop and work with a drawing robot. The setting, with large facade wide windows made sure that the project served as a teaser for their upcoming exhibition: 1000 Patronen about patterns and how they influence and often dictate the lives of the people who live them.

The goal of the project was trying to understand the power of patterns in our lives. Framed inside Wit.h vzw's upcoming exhibition: 1000 patronen, we (the Robot and I) examined if life could emerge from simple (32kb) computer algorithms, by mapping them on to image.


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Drawing #1 — #7

The first 8 drawings, completing the first exposition

Expecto Patronen

Expecto Patronen

9 Degrees of Freedom

9 Degrees of Freedom

So, I thought of naming this one 'Bien Cuit' because I forgot to stop the robot while he was cooking, after a couple of hours he came up with this. I find that this piece helps illustrate the relationship between the robot and I, should the robot be viewed as a tool or as the creator?

The Poet, the Traveller, the Sculptor and the King

The Poet, the Traveller, the Sculptor and the King

Trending Drift

Trending Drift

The robot has a couple of sensors on board, which are vital for him to have a sense of the position he's in, the line he's drawing, the turn he's about to make. However, his sensors were never completely aligned so his perception of the world was always crooked. This was frustrating at first but once accepted it meant that he would always transform one pattern into something totally different and unexpected, creating new opportunities for experimentation.

Phyllotaxis I

Phyllotaxis I

Communication between the Robot and I was one of the interesting parts of this project. An image or piece of data needs to be selected, then processed into a form which can be read and interpreted by the robot. Mistakes, bugs and glitches in the process guaranteed that every drawing became something unique, full of curious mishaps.

lowest Common Denominator

lowest Common Denominator

Rien Coorevits