[FoRK] 50th bday of the pixel [old bits :(]

Rohit Khare khare at alumni.caltech.edu
Mon Dec 13 22:31:02 PST 2004

Yes, I know this old, but the picture is too damn funny. Where's Mr. 
Bunny...? :)

> Artist Unveils Monumental Ode to the Pixel for its 50th Birthday
> Vienna, Austria - Jul 14, 2004 (PRN): Vienna based artist, Claude 
> Bossett, unveiled a tribute to the pixel for its 50th Birthday, titled 
> "Pixel". The tribute takes the form of an acrylic painted 60 cm x 60 
> cm blue square on a 100 cm x 140 cm canvas. It is a "portrait" of a 
> magnified pixel. The tribute makes the otherwise almost microscopic 
> square, quite impossible to oversee. It is one pixel that won't go 
> unnoticed. The magnification creates a sense of importance and offers 
> an element of surprise with a dash of humor.
> The blue square is horizontally centered and placed vertically towards 
> the top of the canvas, thus elevating its placement in the scheme of 
> things. The painting is hung high, so the viewer must tilt their head 
> to "look up", to the pixel. The color blue was chosen to express 
> infinite possibility. The white impasto background puts an emphasis on 
> the paint, which has traditionally been a frequently used medium to 
> represent historical figures and momentous happenings.
> The actual pixel (a word derived from "picture element") was invented 
> by a group of researchers in 1954, at Yale University. It is unlikely 
> that they foresaw it becoming the building block of modern 
> communication and creation. The pixel is omnipresent, since it is the 
> visual basis for anything done on a computer or mobile phone. It 
> allows us to use interfaces that for example, offer alternatives to 
> physical methods, as is the case with email or e-commerce web sites.
> Like most products developed today, magazines, cars and buildings find 
> their beginnings in a pixel. The pixel is undoubtedly the greatest 
> "enabler" of the last 50 years and most likely will continue to be, 
> for the next 50 years.
> The artist, Claude Bossett, however was unaware of the pixel's 
> bicentennial birthday, when the painting was created and was surprised 
> to discover this while researching its history. The coincidence that 
> the painting was created during this particular year makes what was 
> initially a personal celebration by the artist into a universal one. 
> Bossett mentions, "The pixel has allowed me to unleash my creativity 
> in any form I please, be it visually, musically or written. I am 
> grateful every time I open (pixel based graphics software) Adobe 
> Photoshop and am able to create whatever comes to mind. I felt 
> compelled to make a tribute to the invention and the painting "Pixel" 
> seemed like a clear and amusing way to do it."
> The painting joins many other historical squares, but differentiates 
> itself in its meaning. The artist Josef Albers for example, created a 
> series of squares called "Homage to the square". His minimalist 
> squares focused on form and color. Albers, in minimalist tradition 
> negated any story or analogy connected to the squares, depicting them 
> in their own right. By comparison, Bossett´s square is focused on 
> concept and is in fact an actual depiction or portrait of a historical 
> invention. Perhaps its most significant meaning will result in the 
> viewer realizing how the pixel has changed their life, or which of 
> their capabilities it has enabled to flourish. The painting "Pixel" is 
> currently being auctioned off on eBay and may very well be the most 
> expensive single pixel ever.
> About the Artist
> Claude Bossett was born in Austria to an American father and an 
> Austrian mother in 1970. He traveled between Austria´s Carinthia and 
> Silicon Valley extensively while growing up and received a bachelor 
> degree in art and illustration from San Jose State University in 1994. 
> He has displayed several unique series of art including, actual x-rays 
> handled with acid, Projections of clothing onto models photographed, 
> and freeway night construction imagery. He has developed installations 
> and design work for companies such as Levis, Apple Computer Inc., and 
> Kodak.
> To view more artwork, go to Claude Bossett´s website, 
> http://www.appliedideas.net

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