Description Since Euclid formulated his five postulates of abstract mathematical space, artists and scientists have seldom forgotten its power to succinctly express everyday phenomena. Computers allow those expressions to take on ever-more detailed and intricate forms, easily representing dimensions lower than our perceived reality, but going so far as to help imagine dimensions beyond. This piece illustrates a number of these dimensions and the relations between them.In ``Keyhole,'' one-dimensional lines are traced through a three-dimensional flowfield, depositing zero-dimensional dots onto a two-dimensional image plane in the process. Despite the precision of the calculations, there are impurities to Euclid's idealized space. First, the projection to two dimensions is done without correct perspective---a sin to the academic painters of the 19th century.In addition, the lines themselves are subtly nudged as they are traced through space. This adds uncertainty to the calculation and suggests that space itself may not be as even as it is perceived.Lastly, this computationally-intense visualization method exposed a numerical error in the simulation data. The streamlines trace a non-linear circuit around a keyhole-shaped ``attractor'' in the lower portion of the image. Flow lines near the singularity are drawn into the loop, twist around, and emerge on the other side, only to be swirled back to the other end for another go. The presence of this wormhole or keyhole-like connection between spaces prompted the piece's title, and infers the presence of higher dimensions.
Mark J. Stock, Somerville, MA Member Since February 2008 Artist Statement Mark Stock is a programmer, researcher, and artist who explores the boundary between the real and the unreal reflected in the sciences of fluid dynamics, computer simulation, and visual perception. He has had work appear in >80 juried exhibitions since 2001, including Ars Electronica, ASPECT Magazine, and seven SIGGRAPH Art Galleries.
He first learned simulation and visualization by programming Moire patterns and particle dynamics routines on a Commodore computer. His interests in mathematics and programming followed him through high school and led him to acquire degrees in engineering at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. An interest in photography led him to discover computer graphics as an undergraduate at U-M. He spent several years exploring different techniques and tools for creating virtual images. In 1999, while attempting to debug some of his simulation software, he rendered the suspect program's output with a highly-accurate lighting visualization package called Radiance. This inadvertent discovery of an unnatural beauty, hidden within the sciences of computational fluid dynamics and radiosity, prompted him to pursue this branch of new media art. Now, using computationally-intensive tools and methods, he creates artwork that examines perception and humanity in this world of ubiquitous computation.
Mark is a full-time artist and consultant and operates out of his studio in Somerville, Massachusetts.