Reese Inman

Map II
acrylic on panel
24 x 24 in.

In contemporary experience, media-saturated and data-driven, human and computer decisions – and corresponding actions – are increasingly intertwined. The technological precision of the machine operates in conjunction with the errors and inflections of the individual humans who program the computers and enter the data. My paintings are metaphors for this blend of the human and the machine, combining the hands-off exactitude of computer programming with the hands-on discipline of painting, merging an overall sense of technological precision with the inflections and irregularities of the human hand.

Authorship is shared; as artist/programmer, I code the program that drives the computer, which determines composition via random number generation, creating output which then directs my hand. As I follow the computer output, placing each droplet of paint individually, patterns emerge from the data, raising questions of connection between visual order and meaning. An integral obsession of my work is an attempt to evoke the continual human search for pattern, order, and meaning.

My fascination with the paint droplet began with the idea of a droplet as the most basic unit of paint, much as a bit is the most basic unit of digital information. Through the incident of each droplet, the limits of artistic control inherent within the process create tension between uniformity and individuality – while from a distance the droplets appear geometric and uniform, upon closer inspection no two are identical.

© Reese Inman