Mirage is an abstract generative art project about living in and adapting to uncertainty.
The seed of Mirage was planted in 2021 from another series which looked nothing like it. In 2022, against the backdrop of a post-pandemic and pre-recession environment, newly recovering from COVID-19 and having the urge to create, I started to think about other possibilities for the project. I thought about how it may embed the undercurrent of precariousness, relief, mild anxiety, and a bursting life force.
TechniqueThe main technique in this project is mapping. I transformed the earlier series from Cartesian to Polar space. Each space is a world of its own. Moving between them changes the perspective and creates an alternative version of reality. One may encounter a dissonance — not recognizing them as originating from the same code — as the visual starts to take on an entirely new look.
When constructing the pieces, I built the skeleton first. The overarching grid layout formed the backbone of the visual. Then, I filled in flesh and blood – base shapes adapted from rectilinear to curvilinear and colors in various compositions – some distributed randomly, some clustered, some position-based.
One of the main features, and the feature I’m most dedicated to, is color. I used 40 palettes covering a wide range of harmonious, contrasting, and monochromatic hues on both light and dark backgrounds. Some of the palettes were inspired by nature. For example, the Snapdragon palette was from a pot of flowers I brought back from Filoli Garden. Some of others were hand-mixed and interpolated.
When I first started on the project, my perspective on what was going on in the world was gloomy. But as optimism gradually germinated (despite the global outlook not really improving), the newer palettes started to shift to a brighter tonality.
My personal preference tends towards the outputs with both black-and-white and colors in one image, or those emerging from dark backgrounds. To me, they embody optimism and pessimism nested within each other.
The base shapes like petals and squares could appear separately and in various combinations. Some of the outputs have inner and outer circles populated with different shapes.
Centroid guides the starting location of the visual. They could start on the left, right, top, or anywhere in the middle.
This artwork is suitable to be printed and experienced in person.
Please enjoy some additional outputs below. Hope to see you at the project launch.