online performance >>*ImageMachine*

ImageMachine

Abstract:
What Joseph Beuys envisioned as the ideal society for humans is now taking place with computers on the Internet. An extension of the concept of art (Erweiterung des Kunstbegriffs) in this project relates to man-made computers and data networks. Electricity has already driven the honey pump's electric motor, pumping honey. The same electricity is now pumping data around the world via computers and the Internet. For this project, relevant data is picked up from the blockchain production and used to generate new images. An extended *honey pump* for Joseph Beuys' 100th birthday?

Vitalik Buterin, the founder of the crypto currency Ethereum, chose the term ether because it stands for a hypothetical invisible medium that penetrates the universe and allows light to travel. Ether is a very volatile medium on earth. The images created here are just as fleeting, they only remain on a screen for a few seconds or are visible as a projection.
The connections between the worlds of Joseph Beuys & Vitalik Buterin are shown in a diagram.

Technology:
Blockchain technology is based on the fact that a first block consisting of 64 characters, the Genesis block, is repeatedly appended with new blocks consisting of 64 characters, creating a chain, a blockchain. The best known is the Bitcoin blockchain. It was invented in 2009 by a fictional person named Satoshi Nakamoto. Vitalik Buterin's new Ethereum blockchain creates a new block of 64 characters every 10 seconds. She is the data provider for this project.

The ImageMachine consists of several computers, one of which is a cloud computer at AWS, on which several programs written for this project run. It is online 24/7 and is supplied with data by the Ehtereum Blockchain. It uses the 64 characters of the "latest block" to calculate abstract images in PNG format. For this project, one block per minute is used for image production. That's 60 an hour, 1440 a day.

Volatile compounds
These live data performances are shown as a 2-channel video installation. On the one hand, it shows unpredictable, abstract color surfaces, volatile connections of data, and on the other hand the information of the last calculated block in white on black. Selected moments can be recorded as datasets, downloaded to your own server and prepared for printing.

References:
Modified quotations from the artists André Breton and Sol LeWitt.
*An ordinary dataset elevated to the dignity of a work of art by the mere choice of a machine*
*The idea becomes a machine that makes the art*

Quotes about Ostarhild’s work
*The algorithm used to be called God* Prof. Dr. Marcus Steinweg 2019
*The spiritual in art today is the code* Bazon Brock 2012


Jurgen_Ostarhild-ImageMachine-Diagramm


Installation view Sexauer, Showroom, Berlin


Jurgen Ostarhild & Jan Phillip Sexauer, April 2021


Funded as an innovative art project by the BBK-Bundesverband, Germany
Gefördert als Innovatives Kunstprojekt vom BBK-Bundesverband