Movement in Space, Part 2 (2018)

Movement in Space, Part 2 is an interactive installation with maximum 4 participants controlling 4 sets of animated graphics generated from harmonic motion, and shown through a hologram display. Each animated graphics can influence each other with connection and dis-connection of physical cables.

The artwork is part of the Algorithmic Art: Shuffling Space & Time exhibition in Hong Kong City Hall from 27 Dec 2018 to 10 Jan 2019. The exhibition is one of the public event from the Art Machines: International Symposium of Computational Media Art that took place from 4-7 Jan 2019 at the School of Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong. Movement in Time, Part 2 has been invited to join the exhibition as one of the local participants showcasing the concept of algorithmic art.

Algorithmic Art: Shuffling Space & Time promotion video

Exhibition view at the Hong Kong City Hall

Part 2 is an extension of the original web version of Movement in Space. It also built on top of the implementation of harmonograph by pure software, without the hardware details of the construction of pendulum.

Harmonograph, image from

The custom software was built in Processing around the ideas of concatenating sequences of trigonometric functions such as sine and cosine. The imageries may resemble the early computer art and oscilloscope art, such as the works from Ben Laposky.

Oscillon by Ben Laposky, image from

It starts with the simple parametric formulae to draw an ellipse in 2 dimensional plane.

x = A x cos (t)
y = B x sin (t)

where A, B are two numbers and t is the time step for animation. It was then extended to 3 dimensional space with more parameters for more sophisticated control.

x = A x cos (B x t) + C x sin (t + D)
y = E x sin (F x t) + G x cos (t + H)
z = I x cos (J x t) x sin (K x t + L)

where A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K and L are 12 numbers ranging from -1 to 1. By changing the 12 numbers, the software can generate very sophisticated drawings. In addition to this, the artwork consists of 4 drawing units. The outputs (x, y, z) of 1 drawing can redirect to the inputs (A – L) or another drawing unit, and which is a simplified version of an artificial neural network. In the installation, the 12 numbers are controlled by the iPad interface while the connection from one unit to another is done by physically plug in of a signal cable.

Connection of various drawing units to form a network

Each of the four units is equipped with physical sockets and cables to connect the outputs from one unit to the inputs of another.

The video below is a simulation of the 4 drawing units viewed from 4 directions (North, West, South and East). Each participant has his/her own color coded animated drawing.

It is a revolving version of the four animated drawings in the 3 dimensional space.

The video below is a software simulation of the hologram display of the four directions.

Video documentation of the artwork exhibited in the City Hall