A grid of points in the top half of the surface. Each point moves downward and returns to the top when it falls off the bottom edge. Beginning in the upper-left, each row and column moves faster than the previous one. The speeds combine so that the point in the upper-left is the slowest and the point in the lower-right is the fastest. Copy and flip the grid across a central vertical axis and display simultaneously.
Implemented by Casey Reas
16 April 2004
The initial strong spatial configuration disolves into a patterned field. Each column follows the same rhythm, but with a different phase. The surface is continually changing with macro-structures temporarily emerging and dissipating.
The beauty of this piece lies in the simplicity of the algorithm. After
only a few moments of observation, I find myself drifting higher and higher, through a cloud of evenly distributed three-dimensional points. Eventually, all indications of my altitude disappear. If you have the opportunity to watch this piece projected in a dark room, by all means take the trip!
When viewing this project, I cannot help but to zone out a bit and let the sketch fall out of focus. Then, what becomes most noticeable is a subtle blinking of the dots as they merge to form a two-pixel line, then overlap to return to one pixel, then pass and form a two-pixel line before separating. There is a bit of an optical illusion, and subtle hues can be detected.
It's amazing that such rich visual effect can be achieved by very simple codes. The gaps between dots are as important as the dots themselves, and together they ask the peculiarities in our visual perception to form the complete picture ourselves.