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Let There Be Triangulated Art

Let There Be Triangulated Art

Over 15 years ago the French artist and new media theorist Edmond Couchot adjudged: “the fate of image is from now on numerical.” In a series of articles, Couchot pondered how the techniques of numeric configuration (that is, computer graphics) can change the nature of art. “They do it as they are employed to control all automatic images (photography, cinema, television) because they will be, in the short or medium term, transmuted into numbers to be able to be registered, manipulated, broadcasted, preserved, retouched. Those techniques cannot be ignored by artists who are looking for new experiences and new perceptible investigations," he prophesied.

Couchot’s “prediction” has not only been proven in plenty examples of contemporary tech-infused art, but is also found in all activities related to number decoding on our digital files. Art in particular may be translated into mathematical formulas, and even if you’re not good with numbers, software can do it for you. Let’s just say there’s a strong link between Couchot’s stance on manipulated works and Delaunay’s triangulation technique.

Three years ago artist Jonathan Pucky released a series of portraits Delaunay Raster, with pictures of people such as US President Obama and model Kate Moss modified by a software called Scriptographer. After this experiment, many others started to use this technique. Jason Lam, for instance, developed a Processing app called Faceless Void, which uses a webcam to generate the same effect in real time. Take a look at the video below:

In turn, the Chinese artist Henry Chu created Squeal, an iPad app that allows interaction and the modification over 100 triangulated faces.

Meanwhile, the DMesh app, created by Dofl Yun, seems to be a lot more useful. Like Scriptographer, it breaks down any image into geometric shapes, such as the classic paintings in the demo video below. Users can also export the image in bitmap or vector.

Most recently we featured Jean-Christophe Naour‘s, from Innoiz Inc, Poly™ app for iPad, in last week’s Byte The App column’s. This one breaks down your personal drawings or photos into colorful, polygonal patterns of their essential components.

Sadly we didn’t find anything that amazes us more then the works developed by our UK-based creator, Quayola. In his Strata series, he manipulates classic art and architecture, which mutate into animated triangulations. “It’s an exercise of taking those perfect, complete works and turning them into an empty canvas. It’s like a process of finding out what’s really behind those works," he explains. For the artist, this is a way of making the relationship between real and digital visible. “For me it’s important to have realism behind this digital art work, something you can relate to a touchable object.” Watch him explain the series more in detail in our latest behind-the-scenes documentary.