At home both in Oslo and New York, Norwegian Marius Watz (1973) began to experiment with computers at the age of 11. Now his coding serves as the score for sculptures, drawings, and prints recognized for their sharp geometries and bold colors. A kind of 21st-century draughtsman and self-described “visual hedonist,” Watz founded Generator.x in 2005, an international conference, blog, traveling exhibition, and concert tour dedicated to “generative art.” Though computers have been a lasting influence, Watz abandoned a degree in computer science for the dance floor when he began to design digital installations for techno raves.
“Generative works are mostly ‘open systems’ and in opposition to machines or paintings not finished. Generative works are ‘open’ in the sense that the artist does not completely control the process, but allows other factors (whether randomness, external sensory output or user interaction) to affect the output. It is of course possible to create ‘closed’ deterministic works, but most generative artists enjoy the aspect of giving up a certain amount of control. It is a great moment when your own work surprises you. The system becomes a co-creator, and you sit back and enjoy the output. Accidents can be beautiful.” —Marius Watz
“I know several artists (including myself) who would say that code is the only way they can express their aesthetic ideas. The computer is the great democratizer, as it removes the need for manual skill.” —”Generative Art Now,” An Interview with Marius Watz, p. 2.
“Form is its own content, capable of transporting the viewer through non-verbal means. A large part of this experience is the pleasure one feels upon seeing something that gives a sense of wonder.” —”Generative Art Now,” An Interview with Marius Watz, p. 2.
“The irony implied is that while you have all these receipts—all of which are genuine representations of the real-life internet, including hardcore porn, sports, spam and pro-Bush bloggers—they don’t really tell you anything at all. Information is useless in such large amounts. . . . There is something magical yet pathetic about this smart machine doing such an obviously unintelligent thing. . . .” —”Generative Art Now,” An Interview with Marius Watz, p .2
“It is a great moment when your own work surprises you. The system becomes a co-creator, and you can sit back and enjoy the output. Accidents can be beautiful.” —Generative Art and Generator X—A Talk with Marius Watz.”
“My artistic instincts are based on hedonism. If it feels good, it probably is good.” —”Generative Art and Generator X—A Talk with Marius Watz.”