MANFRED MOHR

Reflexions sur une esthetique programmee

MANFRED MOHR

source: dadacompart-bremende

Manfred Mohr is one of the great names of algorithmic art. His work is most distinguished by its radically rational construction in ever increasing complexity. Already his first experiments in “computer art” were distinguished by a clear personal style. Soon he discovered the cube as an exciting topic that he has turned into his source of endless new discovery and inspiration, by following the cube into high dimensions.
Mohr’s career starts as a jazz musician on the saxophone. The lines and timbres of music have accompanied him after he had discovered the computer as the instrument for the realization of his ideas. He wanted to generate complex and surprising images of a clear and transparent underlying structure. The algorithmic description of what he wants to show is exactly the means to do this. In the algorithm he describes the totally determined structure that, when executed with pseudo-random numbers becoming the values of structural parameters, surprises in all its detail. Step by step through his work phases, Mohr has explored the multidimensional cube as a source of aesthetic processes. However, the cube and hypercube do not interest him as mathematical objects. He uses them as a source of visual complexity. In his dedication to the idea of the rationalistically determined experiment, Mohr’s art, in its rigour, may be compared to that of Josef Albers, the researcher of the interaction of color.
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source: artsynet

Influenced by his experience as a jazz musician and by German philosopher Max Bense’s theories on rational aesthetics, Manfred Mohr has been an innovator in the field of computer-generated art. To manipulate, for example, the myriad variations of the 11-dimension hypercube, Mohr created algorithms in FORTRAN programming language and printed them on flatbed plotters before the advent of laser printers. Mohr’s “Klangfarben” series (2008) features paintings and digital animation of brightly colored diagonal lines and intersecting planes against a flat black background.
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source: carrollfletcher

Since the late 1950s, Manfred Mohr, a pioneer of generative and computer art, has been making rigorously minimal paintings and drawings. His work is stringently conceptual, but with an elegant lyricism which belies its formal underpinnings.

During the 1960s, Mohr’s practice evolved from abstract expressionism towards a more hard-edged geometric painting. By 1968, in pursuit of a ‘real rational art’ he had begun to develop a ‘programmed expressionism’ in which algorithms were used to generate art that formalised his vision in a new, logical way.

In 1969, Mohr gained access to one of the first computer-driven drawing machines or ‘plotters’ at the Paris Institute of Meteorology, used at that time by scientists to draw weather patterns. With this plotter, Mohr developed a series of computer programs based on certain algorithms that provided a controlled system through which new visual forms could be explored. Random elements were often incorporated to enable new forms to be generated within the framework of the algorithm. This line of research was inspired in part by philosopher and information theorist Max Bense and also by conversations with composer Pierre Barbaud, who was developing a theory of computer generated music. In computer technology, Mohr found a means of exploring ideas that went beyond his personal limitations, opening up conceptual realms that might otherwise remain inaccessible.

Over the last forty years, Mohr has used the multi-dimensional cube in 3, 4, 5, 6 and 11 dimensions to explore structural relationships within higher dimensions and their artistic potential as a system of two-dimensional visual signs or ‘êtres graphiques’. In 2000, he introduced colour and animation to give fuller expression to the incredible richness of the multiple, complex variations.

Mohr’s exhibition at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris in 1971 was the first solo presentation in a museum of ‘computer art’ calculated by a digital computer. Since then he has had major solo exhibitions in the US and Europe, and group shows at MoMA, New York; Centre Pompidou, Paris and the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo. His work is in major national institutional collections including the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Josef Albers Museum, Bottrop; Museum Ludwig, Cologne; Kunstmuseum Stuttgart.
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source: bitforms

b. 1938, Pforzheim, Germany
Lives and works in New York, since 1981
Manfred Mohr is known as a pioneer of the digital art genre. A co-founder the “Art et Informatique” seminar in 1968 at Vincennes University in Paris, he discovered Prof. Max Bense’s writing on information aesthetics in the early 1960’s. These texts radically changed Mohr’s thinking about creativity, and within a few years, his art transformed from abstract expressionism to computer-generated algorithmic geometry. Encouraged by the computer music composer Pierre Barbaud, whom he met in 1967, Mohr programmed his first computer drawings in 1969.
His first major museum exhibition, “Une esthétique programmée”, took place in 1971 at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. It has since become known historically as the first solo show in a museum of works entirely calculated and drawn by a digital (rather than analog) computer. During that show Mohr demonstrated the drawing of his computer-generated imagery using a Benson flatbed plotter for the first time in public.

Mohr’s pieces have been based on the logical structure of cubes and hypercubes, including the lines, planes, and relationships among them, since 1973. The rules of geometry, logic, and mathematics are fundamental to the artist-authored algorithms that generate his artwork.

Recently the subject of retrospective at ZKM, Karlsruhe, Mohr’s work is collected by the Centre Pompidou, Paris; Joseph Albers Museum, Bottrop; Victoria and Albert Museum, London; Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art; Victoria & Albert Museum, London; Ludwig Museum, Cologne; Wilhelm-Hack-Museum, Ludwigshafen; Kunstmuseum Stuttgart; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Museum Kulturspeicher, Würzburg; Kunsthalle Bremen; Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain, Strasbourg; Daimler Contemporary, Berlin; Musée d’Art Contemporain, Montreal; McCrory Collection, New York; and Esther Grether Collection, Basel.

Solo exhibitions and retrospectives of his work include ARC – Musée d’Art Moderne de la ville de Paris (1971); Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie (ZKM) / Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe (2013); Art Basel, Switzerland (2013); Joseph Albers Museum, Bottrop (1998); Wilhelm-Hack-Museum, Ludwigshafen (1987, 2002); Museum for Concrete Art, Ingolstadt (2001); Kunsthalle Bremen (2007); Museum im Kulturspeicher, Würzburg (2005); and Grazyna Kulczyk Foundation, Poznan (2007). Mohr’s work has also been part of group exhibitions at Fundacion Banco Santander, Madrid (2014); ZKM / Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe (2005, 2008, 2010); the MoMA – Museum of Modern Art, New York (1980); Centre Pompidou, Paris (1978, 1992); Museum Ritter, Waldenbuch (2005, 2006, 2008, 2013); Museo Nacional Centro de Reina Sofia, Madrid (1989); MoCA, Los Angeles (1975); National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo (1984); Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco (1973, 1977, 1980); Musée d’Art Contemporain de Montreal, Montréal (1974, 1985, 2013); Muzeum Sztuki Lodz, Poland (1981, 2011); Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin (1999); MoMA-PS1, New York (2008); Leo Castelli Gallery, New York (1978); Galerie Paul Facchetti, Paris (1965) and Zürich (1970).

Mohr is the recipient of an ACM SIGGRAPH Distinguished Artist Award for Lifetime Achievement in Digital Art; Golden Nica from Ars Electronica; the Camille Graesser-Preis, Zurich; D.velop Digital Art Award and a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship.
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source: elartedigitalwordpress

Manfred Mohr nació el 8 de junio del año 1938 en Pforzheim, Alemania. En 1962 se trasladó a Barcelona, España donde vivió durante un año. Luego estudió en the Ecole des Beaux Arts en París y posteriormente se desplazó a New York donde trabaja desde 1981.

En sus inicios Mohr se desempeñó tanto como pintor como músico de jazz. Es importante destacar que la música tiene una gran influencia en él y sus obras en cuanto al estudio y uso del ritmo y la repetición.

Sus creaciones se sustentan y basan en la estructura de cubos e hipercubos, las relaciones entre los planos y líneas de estos. Sobre su trabajo podemos decir que “uno de los primeros artistas que adoptó un enfoque estrictamente coneptual fue Manfred Mohr, quien sometía su trabajo a una clara estructura que aplicó a la investigación del cubo y posteriormente del hipercubo, el cubo de dimensiones superiores”

En 1971 Mohr presentó su primera gran exhibición Une esthétique programmée en el museo d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. Este evento es conocido como el primer “solo show” en un museo con obras completamente realizadas por una computadora. En esa oportunidad también Mohr presentó una demostración del plotter Benson flatbed y la creación del dibujo generado por computadora por primera vez en público.
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source: galerie-mueller-rothde

1938 geboren in Pforzheim/D
lebt in New York/USA

Die Beschäftigung mit dem Würfel bestimmt die Arbeit von Manfred Mohr seit 1973. Ihn interessiert der Würfel dabei nicht als geometrische Figur, sondern als System von Linienrelationen, die sich durch die zweidimensionale Darstellung eines dreidimensionalen, beim Hyperwürfel auch vieldimensionalen Körpers ergeben. Der Würfel stellt sich für Manfred Mohr als eine Struktur dar, mit deren Hilfe er durch Weglassen, Teilen, Drehen von einzelnen Elementen zu neuen Zeichen findet. Seit 1969 benützt Manfred Mohr bei allen seinen Arbeiten den Computer. Nur so lassen sich die teilweise sehr komplizierten Systeme darstellen.