Digital Nature


Digital Nature is a series of generative art pieces created using algorithmic image creation and processing tools inspired by the movements of insects. The work as presented as part of a September, 2016 exhibition at InterAccess, Toronto called the Sky is also a Map.

The works where displayed as two large (40*30) mounted prints accompanied by a publication detailing the process and featuring additional artworks created through the same processes.


Project Description:

Digital Nature explores the abstraction of organic forms – digital photos morphed into new architectures, pervasive natural forms.

The resulting images are created through bespoke software that uses source information of a digital image to create new digital systems, structures and maps – tracing the origins of the image and generating new forms around it.

Flowers bloom with geometrical extrusions; insects are formed from pixels and bits and the hidden architectures of images are revealed.

Digital Nature focuses on two sets of images that explore the source algorithm through modeling the movements and structures created by various arthropods. These sets are:


Hive Mind – Re-imagining the world of a Bee. New pathways, interactions and structures form from processing the image of a single Bee. Through this process the original Bee is abstracted with jagged lines – sometimes obscuring it completely. Other areas of the image bloom into life creating strange new insects, further manipulations stripping away the surface color reveal diverse, digital hives resulting from the images underlying structure. In Hive Mind a single pollinating Bee dissolves and evolves into a digital hybrid – hinting at the decline of Bees as a species, exploring and celebrating there highly complex patterns and behaviors and imagining the possible introduction of robotic pollinators – Bee.2.


Web Architecture – Web Architecture explores giant web creation through the use of multiple agents moving over the architecture of an image. In this process each agent acts as a spider, part of a larger swarm moving over the source image, which acts as the structure that the web is built on.

Inspired by collective web patterns made by spiders. I originally encountered complex, tented web structures in a series of photos presented in National Geographic – after a flood in Pakistan hundreds of spiders gathered in trees creating huge structure enveloping webs.

In Web Architecture an image becomes a framework for creation. Agents performing simple actions create complex patterns. Through the lens of an algorithm Web Architecture breaks down a beautiful and startling naturally occurring macroscopic pattern and gives us a vocabulary to begin to understand it.

Digital Nature was exhibited as part of Physical Media Matter, December 2016



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