Geneviève Castrée and Anders Nilsen; Escher in Industry City; Evolving Floorplans
Writing about A Bubble
Anders Nilsen discusses his work on the posthumous book by Geneviève Castrée:
It’s often the case that the right solution to a narrative or visual problem feels like it comes out of nowhere. These bubble don’t feel, to me, like “my style,” but they immediately felt right somehow. They aren’t her style either, they are simply what the book asked for, and finally accepted. I very much like that they are, in a way, not a drawing I’ve done on top of hers, but, because they are a literal digital negation of the toothy yellow paper on which she drew, the bubbles manage, in a funny way, to end up behind her work, as a support. At least I hope that’s how it feels to the reader. White is a color of blankness, is the color of an empty page, and of course, of death.
In addition to the Escher works on display, the exhibition includes scientific experiments, play areas and educational resources that will help visitors of all ages to understand the impossible perspectives, disquieting images and seemingly irreconcilable universes which Escher combined to create a unique artistic dimension. Among these special installations will be immersive photo booths constructed to emulate Escher’s hypnotic environments. Visitors will be able to photograph themselves “inside” the worlds of M.C. Escher, including the Relativity Room, which turns normal size and scale on its head, and the “Infinity Room,” in which visitors can see their reflection repeated, seemingly, into infinity.
‘The results were biological in appearance, intriguing in character and wildly irrational in practice.’
Joel Simon (via Boing Boing) on ‘an experimental research project exploring speculative, optimized floor plan layouts.‘
Two simulations, graph-contraction and ant-colony pathing, are used as ‘growth processes’. Graph contraction is a family of algorithms that aim to create visually appealing layouts of a graphs. Ant-colony algorithms are probabilistic methods for finding optimal paths using a hive of emergent agents. Attribute genes encode meta-parameters that control various aspects of the simulations. This is analogous to developmental genes that establish patterns and guide development. Instead of encoding every path of all the hallways, a few attribute genes can optimize the entire layout.
The floor plan genome is a weighted, connected and undirected graph. Every desired room is represented with a node gene that contains information such as the room’s size. Connection genes specify two node genes to span as well as a randomly initialized weight; they are added in a random manner until the graph is connected. Adjacency requirements create a subgraph with maximum edge weight. For example, the cafeteria must be adjacent to the kitchen. The genetic encoding is a generalization of NeuroEvolution of Augmenting Topologies (NEAT) that allows the artificial evolution of neural networks to graphs. This applies historical markers to allow crossover of graphs with varying topology. This allows floor plans to differ in the number of rooms they have.
Cement Mixer – 7-31-18 – by Caleb Orecchio