Year created:


A Society of Stickpeople (captured, #31)

In 2004, I created a graphics program that simulated a population of stickmen and stickwomen through various iconic stages of life: birth, play, love, work, rest, travel, and death. The program is designed in such a way that the results are always unique. The balance of the population may favor women or men; depending on the birthrate, the population may explode or taper off; certain building sites may be full of workers while others remain untouched.

This print is an attempt to capture the entire "evolution" of the society in one frame. Historically, chronophotography was one way that artists and scientists captured motion in this way. Pioneers such as Eadweard Muybridge and Etienne-Jules Marey captured unique images of motion that were scientifically revealing as well as aesthetically pleasing. Marcel Duchamp captured time in a different way in his painting "Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2."

I am continually fascinated by the diversity and complexity of the images that can come from a simple set of instructions given to a computer. This modern take on chronophotography is made possible by the unmatchable raw processing power of the computer, which I enjoy using as an artistic tool.