Leonardo, Volume 33, Issue 3

June 2000



Artists' Articles

  • Research Project Number 33: Investigating the Creative Process in a Microgravity Environment
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    The author, an interdiscipli-nary artist, discusses his creation of art in a microgravity environ-ment as part of the 1998 NASA Student Reduced Gravity Flight Program. He discusses his three-dimensional “drift paintings” which floated in the air along with his body in microgravity. The au-thor posits that the transcendent quality of the creative process can help keep the human spirit alive during long-term space missions.

  • A Scientist's Adventures in Postmodernism
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    The author provides an ac-count of his everyday experience as a physicist, which allows him to witness research on chaos as a science of convergence: the elite with the masses, the scientific dis-ciplines with each other, modern physics with Giordano Bruno's phi-losophy, and science with mysti-cism and art. He also outlines how chaos theory displays postmodern features and dissolves the bound-aries between the “two cultures.”.

  • Hitavaettur and the Implications of Geothermal Sculpture
  • The Sound Gallery: Project Statement
  • An Interactive Test of Color and Contour Perception by Artists and Non-Artists
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    The author explores Richard Latto's proposition that art com-municates effectively because art-ists manipulate basic features of form that the human perceptual system has evolved to detect. She offers an empirical test of the correlated proposition-that view-ers of art use these same fea-tures to assess art. The author presents the results of an experi-ment in which both artists and non-artists were asked to discern and draw shapes in patterns de-fined by iterating dots. She finds that both groups used color in the case of positive shape and form edge in the case of negative space, thereby confirming that both makers and viewers of art fo-cus on the same kinds of features to recognize and assess form.

  • On-Line Resources
  • Perspectives on Science: Historical, Philosophical, Social
  • Design+Undesign: Tibor Kalman, 1979–1999
  • Van Gogh: Fields and Flowers
  • The Sound of Painting: Music in Modern Art
  • Full Moon
  • Digital Aesthetics
  • The Versatile World of Kandinsky
  • Memory Trade: A Prehistory of Cyberculture
  • Is C Actually Red? (Ist C Rot? Eine Kultur- und Wissenschaftsgeschichte zum Problem der wechselseitigen Beziehung zwischen Ton und Farbe: von Aristoteles bis Goethe)
  • Duchamp in Context: Science and Technology in the Large Glass and Related Works
  • Age of Spiritual Machines
  • Materials Received
  • Commentaries
  • Leonardo/ISAST News

Artists' Statements

General Articles

  • The Pathway Between Art and Science: One Painter's Metaphorical Journey
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    The author describes his un-derstanding of the place and pur-pose of his art in the context of our late twentieth century: as an artist, he does not accept a place in the current “death of art” situa-tion. He agrees that abstract art is not self-explanatory although its meaning exists in the collective unconscious. To explain his effort, he has found metaphors in quan-tum physics that enable him to link his artistic process to the dy-namics of progress found in sci-ence rather than to those of re-gression found in the arts.

Technical Note

  • Mathematics, Computers and Visual Arts: Some Applications of the Product-Delay Algorithm
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    The author experiments with a product-delay algorithm as a means of creating graphic de-signs on a computer. With the product-delay algorithm and a little imagination, it is possible to create a wide variety of artistic patterns, several examples of which are presented here.

Historical Perspective on the Arts, Sciences and Technology

  • Grigory Gidoni: Another Renascent Name
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    The author discusses the life and work of Grigory Gidoni, artist-inventor of the early days of the Soviet Union. Nearly forgotten, Gidoni's works and ideas shed light on the spirit and the artistic and ideological atmosphere of the U.S.S.R. in the decades following the Revolution.

Artist's Note

  • Color Music: Visual Color Notation for Musical Expression
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    In this article, the author de-scribes Color Music, an alternative notation system for musical expres-sion. The system uses colors and shapes-powerful tools of expres-sion-in conjunction with sound to form a new language for musical no-tation. The author briefly describes the history of color/sound relation-ships since the time of Aristotle and discusses the use of color in scores by Alexander Scriabin, Arnold Schoenberg, John Cage, Krzysztof Penderecki, Gyorgy Ligeti, Olivier Messiaen and other contemporary composers who recognized color as a tool of expression for musical no-tation. He also discusses the psy-chology and musical meaning of col-ors, along with the role of performers as interpreters of Color Music, and the use of standard mu-sical forms as structural devices for applying color to scores. He de-scribes his Color Music: Toccata and Fugue (1995) in detail.

Leonardo Reviews


  • De Profundus: Adumbrative Reflections?
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    Leonardo was a man who designed war engines. He also anatomized, stripped The flesh from the body And saw the soul; made perspective From a flat sheet flex Round as a moving limb. Transmuted the past to the future In a credible flying device. He inspired a journal's creation over four centuries later; A journal of fine art that grips The same universe as Leonardo And fills it with vigor. That covers the whole field of inquiry made possible with Modern scientific techniques. The art is new. The journal is Leonardo. Subscription is a solid chunk of man's future.