Spencer Museum of Art The University of Kansas

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Simulated Color Mosaic
  • Hiroshi Kawano
  • Simulated Color Mosaic, 1973, Showa period (1926–1989)
  • Where object was made: Japan
  • screen print, computer-assisted
  • Gift of Norton and Irene Starr
  • Not on display
  • 1999.0131.07
Label Text

Exhibition Label:
"Cryptograph: An Exhibition for Alan Turing," Mar-2012, Stephen Goddard
Philosopher Hiroshi Kawano, who has just enjoyed a major retrospective at ZKM (Center for Art and Culture, Karlsruhe, Germany), has been involved with computers as art makers (he does not like the term "computer artist") since 1964. He participated in two early portfolios of computer-generated art, Art Ex Machina of 1972 and the SDL Portfolio of 1973 (the latter was commissioned by Systems Dimensions Limited). Both portfolios were published by Gilles Gheerbrant in Montréal, and both include an artist’s statement to accompany each print. The SDL Portfolio also includes biographies and a description and/or a schematic diagram describing the program used by each artist. The other participants in the Art Ex Machina portfolio are: Manuel Barbadillo, Ken Knowlton, Manfred Mohr, Frieder Nake, and Georg Nees.; and the other participants in the SDL Portfolio are: Manuel Barbadillo, Ken Knowlton, Manfred Mohr, Georg Nees, John Roy, Zdeněk Sýkora, Roger Vilder, and Edward Zajek.

Exhibition Label:
"Japan Re-imagined/Post-war Art," Mar-2008, Kris Ercums
This print, the result of an algorithm based on 100,000 random numbers and five pictorial elements—gray, black, blue, red, and yellow—was created by Hiroshi Kawano, an early pioneer in computer art. In the portfolio,
commissioned by System Dimensions Ltd. (SDL), a Canadian computer company, Hiroshi explains the “Kawano system,” which simulates human cognition of visual stimulus by creating a computer model based on the
body-brain relationship. As an extension of man, we believe that the computer will come
to play an increasingly important role in leading him to new levels of creativity in the arts…My computer art is not only fine art, but is also the result of aesthetic studies through which I wish to throw light on the logic of human art by using the information processing model of the computer.
~ Hiroshi Kawano, SDL PORTFOLIO, 1973