Exhibition at The Edge Theatre, Manchester

10 JANUARY 2022 to 5 APRIL 2022

I want to make what I want when I want. I use digital fabrication technology as a tool for exposing new creative methods. 3D printers, computers, projectors and self built CNC controlled machines are used to produce my work because of their unquestioning relentlessness. To quote Terminator (1984) “It can’t be reasoned with, it can’t be bargained with…it doesn’t feel pity, or remorse or fear…and it absolutely will not stop”. My machine’s determination to press on and work is useful to me– I do not want to be bogged down by my own habits and impatience. I’m interested in styles and genre and how things can be sampled and remixed. I’m eager to avoid being pigeon holed into a singular way of working and using machines allows me to produce a diverse range of approaches and outcomes.

In Frank Herbert’s novel Dune, Mentats are human calculators used to replace banned artificially intelligent robots. They are essentially human computers, capable of complex calculation. Mentats cultivate “the naïve mind”, a supralogical mind without preconception or prejudice. The mental model that this suggests is interesting, what if we could behave/work like a machine? How would our approach change? In Computational Drawing Carl Lostritto explores computation, specifically the craft of writing computer code, as a medium for drawing. Describing through pseudo code the thought process of translating an idea into a computer generated drawing. I want to use machines to make my ideas solid.

“A Factory as it Might Be” is William Morris’s 1884 article imagining the ideal factory as one where work, leisure and education are combined in a building ‘built with pleasure’ by its designers. In Morris’s factory, the use of machinery doesn’t render skilled workers futile but rather complements pleasurable creative work. Machines can be used as a creative tool on a production line aiming at endless variation and innovation.

Coding languages are full of useful mental models that are ripe for interpretation by artists e.g. recomposition, refactored, optimisations and popMatrix. These verbs are like new colours on a palette, encouraging experimentation and exploration. Every work I make rephrases the following questions endlessly– how to represent? what to represent? Each work represents the outcome of a process in flux, experiments of particular parameters and endless possibilities.

Andee Collard