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Article

Anne Blecksmith

Term used to describe pictorial representations of objects and data using a computer. The term also implies the creation of and subsequent manipulation and analysis of computer-generated imagery and graphics. Computer-generated imagery was developed shortly after the introduction of the Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer (ENIAC) in 1946. In 1950, a mathematician and artist from Iowa named Ben Laposky produced computer-generated graphic images using an electronic oscilloscope and photographed the results using high-speed film. The first interactive man-machine graphics program was Sketchpad, invented by Ivan Sutherland, a graduate student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Developed for the TX-2 computer, Sketchpad allowed one to draw on the computer screen using a light pen and processed image manipulation functions through a series of toggle switches.

In 1965, scientists from the USA and Germany organized concurrent computer art exhibitions entitled Computer-Generated Pictures at the Howard Wise Gallery in New York and the Galerie Niedlich in Stuttgart. The American scientists, Bela Julesz and A. Michael Noll worked at Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, NJ, a center of computer graphic development and in ...

Article

Aaris Sherin

American digital type foundry and producer of printed material and graphic design software, which also produces the magazine Emigre. Founded in Sacramento, CA by Zuzana Licko (b Bratislava, 1961) and Rudy VanderLans (b The Hague, 1955), the company was responsible for some of the most recognizable and widely mimicked design and typography of the 1980s and 1990s. Emigre magazine was published and art directed by VanderLans with fonts designed by Licko. It continually challenged common conceptions of design while acting as a staging ground for the founders’ unconventional vision. The work of Licko and VanderLans has come to epitomize both the controversy and success associated with the digital revolution that occurred when Macintosh computers introduced designers to new ways of producing layouts and fonts.

Licko’s family moved to San Francisco from Czechoslovakia. She designed her first font for her father, a bio-mathematician who used the Greek alphabet for personal use. Licko studied visual communication at the University of California, Berkeley (...

Article

John-Paul Stonard

(b Cambridge, 1949).

English photographer, sound artist and film maker. He lived from 1972 to 1979 in Poland, spending two of those years studying graphics at the Academy of Science. His experiences in central Europe, at a time of political and social upheaval, had a strong effect on his view of photography as a political medium. His subsequent work articulated his socialist beliefs, often through black-and-white photographs of his friends in Krakow, Poland, or the East End of London; his large photographs were always unique rather than editional prints, stressing their physical identity as handmade objects. These portraits and figure studies (many printed from negatives made years earlier) have a claustrophobic, sparse atmosphere, suggestive of a mentality bound and defined by the weight of its own history. His work often deals with the problems of a mythologizing interpretation of history and highlights the contingency and specificity of the present. In the mid-1990s he worked on a photographic project in Barcelona to describe the experiences and identities of individuals living in communities. This project, ...

Article

Aaris Sherin

(b Concord, MA, June 13, 1959).

American typographer and graphic designer. While studying with Charles Bigelow (b 1945) at Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, she assisted him and his partner Kris Holmes (b 1950) with the creation of digital type in their studio, Bigelow and Holmes. As one of a group of hand-chosen students, and with a referral and help from Holmes, she went on to earn an MSc in digital typography from Stanford University. As a pioneer in digital type design, Twombly was among the first to create whole digital typefaces that were based on historically important type that had been used for generations in traditional printing. Her first typeface was Mirarea (1984), which won first prize at the International Typeface Competition sponsored by Morisawa and Company Ltd of Japan. She joined Adobe Systems as a part-time employee and became one of only three full-time in-house designers in ...

Article

Grischka Petri

(b Leverkusen, nr Cologne, Oct 14, 1932; d Berlin, April 3, 1998).

German painter, sculptor, décollagist, composer, video artist, and performance artist. He was one of the fathers of the European Happening movement. Vostell studied typography, lithography, and painting in Cologne, Wuppertal, Paris, and Düsseldorf (1950–58). In 1959 he married Mercedes Guardado Olivenza in Cáceres, Spain. Early in his career he discovered Décollage , a technique of cutting, tearing away or otherwise removing pieces of an image. His spelling of the term, dé-coll/age, underlined the term’s dialectical implications of destruction and creation. In the 1960s he worked with chemicals to transfer the process to photography, video, and film, turning it into an all-encompassing strategy of image deconstruction, often within the iconographic framework of violence and sexuality as communicated by mass media.

Vostell’s combined décollage with car parts and television sets, being one of the first artists using such a device as part of a sculpture in 1958. In 1962 he joined the ...