Although much of their artwork looks random, that’s far from reality. A growing number of “data artists” are creating conceptual work using information collected by personal data trackers, mobile apps, scientific experiments and even hand written notes.
Translating that data using creative metrics and physical mediums, their works reveal patterns hidden in nature and ourselves, often revealing it through the lens of colorful sculptures or images.
Some artists, like Laurie Frick, envision a world transformed and beautified by our wealth of data. Others see it as an interpretive tool used to see things previously hidden to our senses.
Let’s look at 5 examples from artists who are on the forefront of this new art trend.
A long time proponent of personal data tracking, Laurie Frick is bringing her vision of highly personal artworks into reality using a variety of colorful mediums. Often large in scale, they both express and abstract their data.
Take back your data and, turn it into art!
In her TED Talk, Frick shares the enthusiasm she has for transforming our own data into personalized art.
Her sculptures may look highly abstract, but the method Nathalie Miebach uses to create them is far from it. In 2006 she began creating low-tech data collection devices to extract weather data. She then weaves incredible baskets with each piece precisely dictated by what the environment revealed.
In this TED Talk Miebach explains the fascinating process behind creating each of her sculptural works:
In her ongoing series “Income’s Outcome” Danica Phelps tracks the money generated by the sale of each of her drawings. After each drawing is sold she draws a sketch of how she spent that money, including colorful stripes to display the income generated. In this way, each previous drawing generates another.
Cristian Ilies Vasile and Martin Krzywinski
Using Circos, a circular visualization software popular in Genomics, Cristian Ilies Vasile and Martin Krzywinski have created circular representations of π, φ and e. The resulting artworks are vibrant and instructive of the patterns hidden in these impressive mathematical constants.
Giorgia Lupi and Stefanie Posavec
Having only met twice in person, this data obsessed duo got to know each other quickly through weekly postcards. Their endearing year-long project “Dear Data” saw the pair sending postcards from New York to London and back – each with a week’s worth of personal data on the front and instructions for reading that data on the back.