Above: Asterism Icon (2021) gold-leaf + paint on panel, 41 x 33 cm
OX (2021) gold-leaf + paint on panel, 41 x 33 cm
HRV (2021) gold-leaf + paint on panel, 41 x 33 cm
The “Asterisms Icon” is an extension of a project based on my book A S T E R I S M S. An asterism is a group of stars, and is also a typographic symbol consisting of three asterisks placed in a triangle, used for a variety of purposes. The conceptual placement of a group of stars painted as a religious icon draws attention to one of the themes of this project, questioning the spiritual connection to the stars and the need for us to have an associated deity.
Ideograms is a series of prints and paintings using symbols, numbers, characters, and ideas that cannot be said aloud. “OX” and “Trinidy” are part of the series. “Ox” is the original painting and “Trinidy” is the print that followed. “Ox” is dedicated to the memory of Oksana Chatchko, one of the founders of Femen, and a good friend. “Trinidy” is a female first name meaning origin and popularity.
“HRV” is dedicated to the memory of Harvey McLeod, a long-time collaborator and friend.
You are one in Sum million uses the roman numeral system to express the sentiment in the title. This is done without using the line over top to indicate large sums therefore breaking down and it can not spoken.
You are one in Sum million uses the roman numeral system to express the sentiment in the title. This is done without using the line over top to indicate large sums therefore breaking down and can not spoken.
Other works in this series include Ideograms a letterpress print.
Above: You are one in sum million (2017) letterpress print, 30 x 20 cm
Ideograms (2016) letterpress, 30 x 20 cm, ed 10
A Trip to the race track 1-6 (2016) ink on paper, 61 x 45.7 cm
Exploring memory, childhood and the modern family structure, these works take their subject from an inherited family interaction. A trip to the race track is simultaneously an innocent memory of adventure, and a perspective on absence. These six drawings explore a moment fractured by time, testing the record and memory within a single photograph.
Divorce (2018) tissue, fil 80cm x 60cm
An Act to amend the Civil Code (2018) tissue, fil 80cm x 60cm
No-fault divorce – Divorce Reform Act (2018) tissue, fil 80cm x 60cm
This triptych is an extension of my research on the quantification of data on Couples. Each work represents the date of a Civil Law, expressed as a fraction of the population at the time of its ratification.
Be still my heart(2018) 46sec HD video
Be still my heart is part of an ongoing series of portraits based on user’s Tinder data. The 43 second video translates one month of data, 147 matches and 398 messages. The process of transferring this information into a video was done by writing a program to simulate a user’s interaction data onto the movement of a hand-drawn heart and lungs. Both the breath and heartbeat increase with each match, and decrease depending on messages sent.
Quadrifolium (2020) fabric, thread, 121.92 x 200 cm (48” x 78.75”)
Quadrifolium was shown at Belle Beau in Arles as part of the Rencontres in 2021 and the inauguration exhibition the Rose Garden.
The chances of finding a four-leaf clover (trifolium, normally) in the wild is about 1 in 10,000 and is often associated with good luck. In folklore a clover forager is also believed to be someone who knows where the witches and fairies are. Edward Martin currently holds the record for finding the most four-leaf clovers, a total of 111,060 collected from 1999 — he is known only for this collection “I’m just lucky,” he said. “I have no education to amount to anything beyond a couple years of high school. My kids are not burdens to society,” he said — according to the Chicago Tribune1. There is also George Kaminski who found 72,927 four-leaf clovers while serving time in a Pennsylvania prison.
Three photographes from the Clovers series : Clover 1-16 (2019) inkjet print, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
From left to right : 48.891082, 2.221874, 45.51715, -73.58635, 50.823845, 4.334820
A selection of photographs were shown at Belle Beau in Arles as part of the Rencontres in 2021 and the inauguration exhibition “the Rose Garden”. They were also show in the group show Transitions at Galerie Mansart in 2021.
In 2017 I collected twelve four-leaf clovers and four five-leaf clovers that I documented in a series of photographs, titled by their GPS location. This experience has expanded into a larger project, exploring the meaning of plants, their root systems and networks. Since then my collection has expanded to over 120 clovers including 4s, 5s and a 9 leafer. Their location of discovery has been documented by their coordinates and can be found on a map accessible online.
Vincent Van Gogh said every artist has a flower. He wrote to his brother naming three mostly now forgotten artists “You may know that the peony is Jeannin’s, the hollyhock belongs to Quost, but the sunflower is mine in a way.”2 And the clover is mine. This is not just because of my strange ability to find these oddities, but also because their root system is a rhizome.
The rhizome root system, which sends out roots horizontally from their nodes, is an adventitious system and a means for the clover to multiply. This means that a four-leaf is often part of a larger plant. Unlike the popularized conception of the rhizome however, there is a central hub. The central hub is its strength. Remove that central hub, and the nodes die — like most systems of power. Looking at technological systems, the clover’s root system has become my preferred metaphor for the surveillance society we live in.
Three pieces from the Mouti-Mouti series : Mouti-Mouti 1-10 (2019) thread on fabric, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
From left to right : *69 VS Shanti JI, International transfer fee VS Sharmily, Mechanical Embroidery VS Bharti
This system can also be understood as a “string figure” as described by Donna Haraway, “storytelling and fact telling; it is the patterning of possible worlds and possible times, material-semiotic worlds, gone, here, and yet to come.”3
Napoleon was known to have been one of the greatest generals in history and was famous for his ability to make a decision at battle with a “clin d’oeil,” or blink of an eye. What is often not mentioned is that he was in possession of a hot air balloon, he had surveillance technology. The trifolium roots system allows the plant to be in multiple places at the same time, much like modern surveillance technologies.
The acts of decoding through mapping are described by Gilles Deleuze’s and Félix Guattari’s writings on the Rhizome. As a new image of thought “that overturns the model and outlines a map.” Using the root system of the same name they describe their theory and research as one that allows multiple non-hierarchical ideas; thus an Illustration for a system of thought through mapping and non-binary choice. This description of the Rhizomes are a perfect description of many systems we interact with today, and Deleuze and Guattari were precociously aware that these new systems can “give rise to despotic channels,”4 and as artist Tom Sherman articulated perfectly: “hierarchical relationships do not have to be vertical in nature – they can of course be horizontal.”5
Napoleon’s Clin d’oeil (2019) jacquard, 66 x 87 cm │ “Napoleon’s Clin d’oeil 1-2” (2019) inject print, 30 x 20 cm
Napoleon’s Clin d’oeil was shown at Belle Beau in Arles as part of the Rencontres in 2021 and the inauguration exhibition the Rose Garden.
The chances of finding a four-leaf clover was about 1 in 10,000, until in 2010 when the University of Georgia in Athens and Samuel Roberts Noble foundation in Ardmore, Oklahoma, believed they found the four-leaf gene and made the plant available on the commercial market. In 2018 I purchased three of these plants from a local plant market in Montreal. I washed the plant to expose its roots and photographed the specimens. The image of these plants with their roots exposed was then rendered into a jacquard. I then manually embroidered the plant’s leaves back to their original appearance as a way to highlight how meaning can be lost through a photograph or digital representation.
The trifolium is now joined by the quadrifolium through cross breeding technologies. The morphologies that creates four, five, six, and record holder 56 leafer was mapped by SSR (Simple Sequence Repeats) DNA was extracted from young leaves and used to genotype a mapping population. This with the recent leap in biology, the invention of CRISPR, will make these types of intervention only easier. Therefore, does the quadrifolium, unlike the four-leaf trifolium, propose a new meaning of chance, one that is made instead of found?
Three drawing from the clover series : Clover 1-7 (2019) ink on paper, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
The map showing all the clovers I have found can be found (here)
 George, Jason (March 17, 2008) “160,000? That’s a lot of luck” Chicago Tribune, — https://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-xpm- 2008-03-17-0803160132-story.html
 Vincent van Gogh (to Theo) “Letter 573”, 22 or 23 January 1889
 Deleuze, Gilles, et Guattari, Félix “Capitalisme et schizophrénie; Mille Plateaux” Paris,
France: Les Éditions de Minuit 1980, p. 31.
 Sherman, Tom “Primary Devices” IInformation.Cambridge /Massachusetts: The MIT
Press / London / United Kingdom : 2016, p. 96.
 Donna Haraway ”Staying with the Trouble: Making Kin in the Chthulucene” NC: Duke University Press, 2016., p. 2
The “Abyssal Zone” is a mechanical translation of data. Each drip translates a barrel spilled at an incident as a drop of paint. Each painting is associated with a quote about the spill and the silhouette of an image related to the location. The title of the series describes deep areas of the ocean that remain in perpetual darkness, as a metaphor for the attempts of the quoted parties to hide wrongdoing.
Niger Delta (2021) paint on canvas, 130 x 162 cm (51” x 63.75”)
“It is very much the responsibility of the Nigerian government” – Shell
2008-2009: The Shell pipeline in the Niger Delta broke in 2008 and spilled 282,000 barrels. Clean-up started almost 2 decades later.
Norilsk (2021) graphite and ink on paper, 120 x 120 cm (47.25” x 47.25”)
“The oil spills have been well contained” – NorNickel
2020: The NorNickel’s fuel storage tank in Norilsk Russia failed because of the melting of the permafrost where it was located. The spill released 169,000 barrels into several local rivers including the Ambarnaya river, where booms broke and the spill flowed into connecting rivers.
Trans Mountain (2021) paint on canvas, 60 x 80 cm (23.6” x 31.5”)
“The Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion is in the best interest of all Canadian’s” – Justin Trudeau
2014-2019: Trudeau’s first term, 10,030 barrels spilled in Canada.
Each barrel was rendered as a drop of ink on paper, most spills are not recorded because they are daily and they are smaller than a cube tuck which is by agreement not recorded.
Gulf of Mexico (2019) graphite and ink on paper, 54,29 x 75,5 cm (21,375” x 29,75”)
“Nothing can be done” – Taylor Energy
2004-Current date: Taylor Energy’s offshore well sunk in Hurricane Ivan and continues to leak 400-700 barrels a day.
**** Update: 700 barrels has been sinse been re-calculated. Most estimates are now 1,000 barrels a day.
Our World 1991 (2020) styrofoam, metal, ink and paint 45 cm x 30 cm x 30 cm (18” x 11,75” x 11,75”)
In the fall of 2017, while in residency at Studio XX – Montreal, I started looking at oil spill data dating from 1991. There are two reasons why this year revealed itself as important: 1991 was the first year the oil industry was subject to the Oil Spill Pollution Act of 1990 (33 U.S.C. 2701-2761)1, enforcing the removal of spilled oil and assigning liability for the cost of clean-up to the responsible party; and this was the year of two of the largest spills to date: the Gulf War oil spill and the ABT Summer spill.
Most sources I consulted estimated between 45 to 290 spills globally each year. After months of collecting 1991 oil spill data from various public and NGO databases I found the number was much closer to 1500. Once the data had been aggregated I built a program in Java to generate a visualisation which mapped the global incidents, and I explored different options to create an artwork. In 2020 I settled on the 3d sculpture “Our World – 1991”
If you would like to read more about the project you can download the full PDF here in french and english.
The Environmental Rorschach was exhibited in 2021-2022 at Christie Contemporary.
“In a moment when the value of data seems to have surpassed the value of oil, Naomi Cook turned her attention to the intersection of these two economic drivers, namely global oil spill data. Translating statistical information into visual volumes is at the core of Cook’s practice, as she constantly mines tabulated records on a range of subjects for image potential. The oil spill data led to records of other ocean trauma, such as ghost nets and agglomerated plastic waste, realized as a suite of drawings, etchings and tapestries. Data is commonly considered a package of verified facts, but nonetheless requires interpretation to communicate value. This proposed a psychological paradigm that became the core of this project for Cook, as data began to operate as a kind of Rorschach test.”
– Claire Christie
Included in this project is a series of large format drawings depicting other oceanic trauma, such as ghost nets and plastic islands. Working from photographs of these environmental dangers, I have translated the pixels that build the images into lines drawn by a quill. Much like my data-driven works, I have taken the place of an interpretive technology as an intervention and process of understanding. This process in turn has created a play on the optics in the image which dissolves when viewed from a close distance. My aim is to ask the viewer to find the optimum perspective to “focus” the image, allowing the viewer to make their own assignment through their physical proximity.
Above: Ghost Net (2018) ink on paper 70 x 90cm
Flotsam (2021) ink on paper, 76 x 82 cm
Rorschach Test (2019) ink on paper, 76 x 82 cm
(Neg)entropy (2021) thread 256 x 333 cm (101” x 133”)
For the -“Environmental Rorschach” I also explored net making, a long-used fisherman’s technology for entrapment. The net utilized for “(Neg)entropy” was found disregard on the shores of le Havre. Already a drawing this white and blue net presented itself like the horizon seen at sea. I then much like a spider employed the netting knot to draw in waves and further develop the perspective. “Trash fish” was done in the same way but to develop a three-dimensional oil platform into a trout net.
Mount Polymer (2021) jaquard, thread, 80 x 112.25 cm (31.5” x 45.5”)
“With tact and wit, Naomi B. Cook takes over the museum of the founder and the most famous of the positivists, Auguste Comte. Installed within the rooms, through careful punctuation, her artworks at once blend in and stand out from the background. As if embarking on an expedition to both the past and the future, plunged in the capsule apartment as in a space frozen in time, the viewer is confronted with quirky and uncanny objects, familiar and yet awfully artificial.
ASTERISMS shows three-dimensional works, videos, and cyanotypes, each of them directly related to one of the 35 mythologies that compose the book Asterisms, the first phase in the overarching eponymous project. Published in 2021, the book is a remapping of the night sky, replacing the established constellations with Asterisms found and named by the artist. Each Asterism is deciphered by a story – a myth emerging from contemporary notions, terms, and preoccupations, questioning among others the Anthropocene, climate change, online dating, robotics, and artificial intelligence. The collection is meant to be used as a pocket guide to the interpretation of our night sky, reading through the stars to decode the present. Neither entirely fact, nor fiction, the artist embraces the positivist tradition, grounding each myth on an element based on a verifiable certainty.”
– Gabriela Anco
The beginning of this project started with considering a Positivist axiom that is undisputed and largely unverifiable, and which dates to the beginning of civilization: that large celestial bodies influence those on earth. Logical positivists believed that science and philosophy should be based solely on things that can be observed with absolute certainty. In 2016, I started remapping the stars into 35 new star patterns, or Asterisms. Much like the 88 constellations that make up the officially recognized map of the celestial sphere, this new map is composed of recognizable shapes that reference people, animals, and inanimate objects, expanding across the sky. It seemed natural that each Asterism should be complemented with a modern myth. For the 35 mythologies, there is one writing constraint I have given myself. Each myth has to be based on a verifiable certainty (i.e. a fact) and reference our continual hope in the stars. In the tradition of Hellenistic astrology, I developed 35 myths that address the source of this project: the Positivist axiom, while referencing modern concerns. The written text; A S T E R I S M S consists of 100 pages and was published at the beginning of 2021, by Anteism, a book publishing house based in Montreal. The resulting book will extend beyond its pages as a new “hitchhiker’s guide” based on viewable celestial star formations, each mythology offering an examination of the Anthropocene.
A S T E R I S M S (french/english) can be purchased here.
CAN OF TINT
The book “A S R E R I S M S” (french/english) can be purchased here.
A S T E R I S M S was exhibited at the Maison d’Auguste Comte and was part of Journées du Patrimoine and Nuit Blanche. Currated by Gabriela Anco.
Mt.Gox_2011-2014 (2018) plexiglass, gouache, 36.34 x 51.5 x 6 cm (each)
credit: Olivier Lechat
Mt.Gox_2011-2014 is a portrait of the full existence of the first bitcoin exchange drawn on 12 layers of plexiglass. The rise and fall of the price are shown in peaks and valleys and the volume has been hand-drawn to visualize the four years of operation.
Mt.Gox_2011-2014 was exhibited in 2019 as part of the Projective Drawing, a group exhibition at The Drawing Lab – Paris curator by Brett Littman
“Naomi B Cook’s triptych of monochromes in pure colours could only refer to the quest for the sublime if each piece did not have a text etched into the plexiglass. The words, rearranged, come from data. And what is interesting is the context of their collection. In the blue work, the words are from a report on the 2010 flash crash of the stock market attributed to high-frequency trading, which gives decision-making algorithms a prominent place in finance. In red, the words are those of users of the dating app Tinder where decisions are made with a gesture of the thumb or index finger. Finally, in green, the words are from a dataset of 600,000 emails exchanged by employees of the American company Enron shortly before its bankruptcy in 2001. A case in which accounting malpractice caused a media stir at the time. The last straw was that the Enron Corpus has since been used to train algorithms capable of making decisions – particularly in terms of tax avoidance.”
– Dominique Moulon
(From Decision Making – L’instant décisif / The Decisive Instant Press Kit)
Market Findings (2017) plexiglass, 62 x 81 x 0.5 cm (24.5″ x 32″ x 1/4”)
For this piece, I extracted a list of terms from the report on the May 6th, 2010 Flash Crash. The terms are presented in a list separated by commas like a data set.
The Internalizer and the Market Maker is a complementary work to “Market findings.” In this work, a 28-second message scrolls past on a ticker and reads out the following quote from the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission & U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission, Findings Regarding the Market Event of May 6, 2010, released four months after the Flash Crash. The Internalizer and the Market Maker have yet to be named by the S.E.C.
“Detailed analysis of trade and order data revealed that one large internalizer (as a seller) and one large market maker (as a buyer) were party to over 50% of the share volume of broken trades, and for more than half of this volume they were counter parties to each other (i.e., 25% of the broken trade share volume was between this particular seller and buyer).” [I]
[I] U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission & U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission, Findings Regarding the Market Event of May 6, 2010 (SEPTEMBER 30, 2010), 69.
Market Findings is part of an ongoing project exploring High Frequency Trading and was shown at Christie Contemporary in 2017 as part of Form and Fraction, and at Mansart gallery as part of the group show Double Trouble in 2020 and the Canadian Cultural Centre as part of the group exhibition Decision Making in 2021.
Words Exchanged (2020) plexiglass, 62 x 81 x 0.5 cm (24.5″ x 32″ x 1/4)
Words Exchanged is based on the private messages of a Tinder user, the same data set as “Be Still My Heart” and the video of the same name. The words have been rearranged from most-used to least-used words and listed like a data set, separated by commas. Line breaks have been introduced with a surprising effect that references cut-ups and interactive voice responses, such as those used by digital assistants like Siri.
Words Exchanged (2021) HD video, 6min 19sec
Words Exchanged was exhibited at Mansart gallery as part of the group show Double Trouble in 2020 and the Canadian Cultural Centre as part of the group exhibition Decision Making in 2021.
Some words on Special-purpose entities (2022) plexiglass, 62 x 81 x 0.5 cm (24.5″ x 32″ x 1/4”)
“Some words on Special-purpose entities” is the third in a series of Plexiglass etchings. This piece is derived from the Enron corpus wherein four emails were identified out of 600,000 as exchanges on Special-purpose entities — the vehicle through which Enron hid their devaluing stock, which eventually led to the company’s collapse in 2001. The corpus is valued as one of the few publicly available mass collections of real emails easily available for study. It was originally dumped online by a disgruntled lobbyist, who worked on Enron’s behalf. The corpus has been used to train over 100 applications including Siri, Facebook and multiple spam robots. A program was written by the artist to remove any word redundancies, and the text was arranged as if it were a message exchange.
The RGB Triptych was exhibited the Canadian Cultural Centre as part of the group exhibition Decision Making in 2021 and Double Trouble at Mansart gallery in 2020. Market Findings was also exhibited at Christie Contemporary in 2017 as part of Form and Fraction.
meatus acusticus internus / acoustic_canal_22s.wav (2014) copper etching, 31 x 42 cm., ed. 12
meatus acusticus internus / acoustic_canal_22s.wav was part of the Pianola Project shown at pfoac221 in 2014 and was commissioned by Pierre François Ouellette art contemporain.
This print is composed of two parts: a hand engraved image of an internal ear canal, and a sound wave visualization engraved by a CNC machine. The sound wave visualization was produced using a computer program I developed that scanned the ear drawing and transferred it into sound.
Pianola (2013) ink on paper, sound, 122 x 548.5 cm
The Pianola Project is based on a player piano roll of Pete Wendling’s song “Hesitation Blues”. This was used as a template to transfer the placement of notes onto a 4 x 18 ft roll of paper. The original height of the scroll is 1 ft, which is scaled up to 4 ft on the large paper, embellishing the original in fractal-inspired way inspired by Benoit Mandelbrot’s theory of noise and disturbance.
The structure retained from the enlargement of the original player piano roll are compositional guides for the drawing, dictated in part by “Hesitation Blues”. This lack of control over the composition has made the process of realizing the drawing more about re-vealing rather than inventing. Through the drawing I am interpreting the original player piano roll’s information in my own artistic language.
Using the guidelines of original player piano roll manufacturing, the speed and format was interpolated. Piano rolls are governed by rules that control the pitch, tone and volume. The Buffalo Convention of December 10, 1908 established two roll formats. “Hesitation Blues” works out to a tempo of 70 signifying 7 feet of paper traveling in one minute, setting the duration of the song at 2min 18s. The movement of sound also relates to the length or the drawing: the technical description of hertz(Hz) uses Feet. The 18 ft of the drawing translates as 19.0556 Hz – a frequency that sits at the very beginning of the human ear’s capacity to hear.
Through a process of retro-engineering the drawing was returned to sound using computer music software and a new program design specifically for this project. This computer program plays through the guidelines and mathematics of the original structure the drawing is based upon. The outcome retains a lingering shadow of the original song; peeking through the new layers of information – either barely audible or structurally dominant as an imperfect rendering mixed with new notes and information; a new composition, re-arranged in a drawing.
The Pianola Project at pfoac221.
Here Stands the Years is a textile-based work made using Jacquard loom and hand embroidery techniques. The digitally woven motif is from a photograph of roses collected through the duration of a relationship. The roses have been re-rendered to the original detail of the photograph by embroidering each rose by hand. Each rose tells a story; a history of special occasions and apologies. It was my intent to render the effort that goes into maintaining a relationship, and to underscore how the memory can be lost through photographic or digital representation.
Here Stands the Years (2018) fabric, thread, wooden dowels, 80 x 100cm
Cache (2017) uncoated brass, 4.5 x 2.5 cm.
In 2016 as part of Résidences croisées FRANCE/QUÉBÉC I was given locational data by three consenting anonymous participants on the last day of women’s affair and members of Ashley Maddison. This project was spurred by a highly publicized user information leak of this dating website specializing in affairs. While in residency at Récollets I examined a day in the life of two of the site’s members and a third person as seen through their GPS coordinates. Their locations span across a city, including home, work, and a visit to a hotel. I call this project Troïka (Troika, aside from being a set of three in Russian, is also a traditional dance with two women and one man). It is seen from the perspective of a female, the central figure of this data set.
With this information I centred all the work in the Troïka project, while exploring the politics of sex through the platform of online networks.
Troïka (2017) fabric, 192 x 136 cm
FC 15:36:46.000 time-lapse is a copper engraving based on one millisecond of stock data from May 6th, 2010 – also known as the “Flash Crash”. A total of 379 trades were executed within a single millisecond. This work uses the data from this brief moment, applying it to a human scale. The lines map a distance and direction a person would need to to walk from the New York exchanges BATS, PACF and Nasdaq to exchanges in Chicago, Philadelphia, Boston, and others across the United States.
FC 15:36:46.000 time-lapse (2016) copper plate engraving, 56 x 71 cm
Shibboleth (2015) 27sec HD video
This video was shown as part of SOCIÉTÉ SECRÈTE, Clark’s members annual exhibition, May 14th to June 18th, 2015.
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday (2018) 1min 22sec HD video
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday is a video created based on a workshop I gave with families at Studio XX in Montreal.
Music by : Jake Falby
My Two Cents (2016) ink on paper, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
Clark Million (2016) ink on paper, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
YUGOSLAVIA Billion (2016) ink on paper, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
Credit Coin (2016) ink on paper, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
Brothel token (2016) ink on paper, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
Nouvelle Caledonie Franc (2016) ink on paper, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
Punt (2016) ink on paper, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
Zimbabwe dollar (2016) ink on paper, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
Zimbabwe trillion (2016) ink on paper, 27.94 x 29.21 cm
On March 23, 2012 at 11:14:18.436 BATS released a sell algorithm listing it’s own stocks. BATS (Better Alternative Trading System) was founded in 2005 by Dave Cummings, a scalper and pit trader from NASDAQ. Five years later BATS was one of the largest stock exchanges and accounted for almost 10% of all trading. The Exchange, throughout it’s history has made several attempts to create an IPO or Initial Public Offering which is designed to list the best offered price of a given stock to the public. March 23, 2012 was an early attempt at this, and represents the tenuous nature of the stock data used in this video. The stock’s initial price at 11:14:18.436 was $15.25 and plummeted to $0.0002 in 1.25 seconds, subsequently halting trading due to the dramatic loss off value.
This video BATS_2012-03-23 uses this 1.25s of data to present a hand-drawn representation of the minuscule effects of algorithm-based trading on stocks by extending the timeframe to a six-minute video. This allows a more human reading of the fluctuations in buy/sell algorithms that can have profound impacts on our lives.
The process of transferring the stock data into a video began as as program written by the artist to simulate the effect of price, value and time on an object of data represented by an outline drawing of a crumpled American dollar bill. Each second of movement in the video represents three milliseconds of the original data. The crumpled bill moves down the vertical axis and right along the horizontal axis, and compresses or expands – all representing price, time, and value of the stock. High Frequency Traders and other buy/sell interests influence the shape and size of the object, including the EURion constellation’s pattern – an critical signifier for preventing counterfeiting.
– BATS-2012-03-23 was shown in Toronto at Pierre François Ouellette art contemporain as part of the Allegory Algorithm exhibition.
Above : Dollar bill I-V (2015) ink on paper, 29.25 x 42 cm
BATS_2012-03-23 time lapse (2015) ink on paper, 28 x 21.5 cm
Below : BATS-2012-03-23 -detail (2015) HD video, 6:20 min
The SS EL FARO built-in 1975 had a regular route from Florida to Puerto Rico. Late September 2015, the cargo ship left Jacksonville, Florida. Soon storm warnings turned into Hurricane warnings. Captain Michael C. Davidson decided to continue but changed the route closer to the shore. Early October 1st, the ship hit the Hurricane Joaquin head-on and all 33 crew members were lost at sea. These are words of Chief Mate, Steven W. Shultz, Second Mate Danielle L Randolph, Helmsman Frank J. Hamm, and Captain Micheal C. Davidson.
Blake Hargreaves ……. voice of ……. Captain Micheal C. Davidson
Ian Earl ……. voice of ……. Chief Mate, Steven W. Shultz
Hermon Mehari ……. voice of ……. Helmsman Frank J. Hamm
Sarah Swinwood ……. voice of ……. Second Mate Danielle L Randolph
Translation by : Théophile Valat and Stanislas de Haldat
SS EL Faro can be purchased on the Negative -1 platform.
A S R E R I S M S (french/english) can be purchased here.
Kite (2020) cyanotype, 25 x 35 cm
Hight Top (2020) cyanotype, 25 x 35 cm
Amusement Ride (2020) cyanotype, 35 x 60 cm
Same but different (2016) c-print, 60 x 90 cm
This photographs rendered as collages in algorithmic patterns is a scan of a photograph of photograph of a scan of two photographs arranged in the hadamard matrix.
Midi Sketches is a continuation of a sound based project called the Pianola. Both involve the musical interpretation of images into sound. Midi sketches or MS melodic loops was created using two process both involving Algorithmic drawing. The tripytic; MS 2 (18, 16, 13, 6, 3), MS 5 (8.5, 6.5), and MS 8 (20, 18, 12.5, 10, 6), was created by an arbitrary horizontal line. This was followed by a procedure of mathematical elimination. Then it was styled by a fractal-inspired way relating to Benoit Mandelbrot theory of noise. The diptych; MS 9(KEY) and MS 10 (GEN) utilized a found midi track as inspiration. The track was reduced to a small section and used as the starting point, then followed by an interpretation into my own artistic language also relating to Benoit Mandelbrot’s theory of noise. Through a process of retro-engineering the drawings were returned to sound using a new program designed by me specifically for this project. This computer program cycles through the artistic marks and busses them to any music software for further musical stylizing. The diptych still retains some qualities of the original score. Both were interpreted using the mathematical rules dictated by the Buffalo Conversion which is basis of all Player Piano Rolls – the starting system for the Pianola project.
Four by Six (2017) Inkjet print, 65 cm x 93cm
In 2017 I was working on a project centred on ancient datasets derived from religious counting systems and superstitions. What drew me to this building was the apparent grid-like architectural design that was close to the data subject I was researching. In these systems were mathematical principles that separated things into columns and rows. This image is a fractal photo-montage of a building that disappeared the next day and was no longer. The disappearance of the building prompted me to reconstruct the image, enlarging each photo with a mathematical system that spirals it into the centre. This chance encounter with an ephemeral subject challenged the existence of the initial photo and inspired this grid-like composition to separate its essence into four by six. In the process of reconstructing this image it became clear that the absence of the building made the image more real and that the building now only exists in the the photo as if to haunt it.