Andrey Koens_

Andrey Koens | Brazil

Born in 1992, São José dos Campos, Brazil. Lives and works in São Paulo, Brazil.

Andrey Koens is an artist, mastering in Visual Arts at the UNESP Arts Institute. His investigations relate digital aesthetics to the poetics of pictorial image, exploring post-photography, AI and robotics. He is part of GAIA (Art and Artificial Intelligence Group FAU-USP / Inova USP), where he researches virtualization and digital architecture of art institutions. Since 2010, he develops software, with projects for the Artificial Intelligence Center (C4AI-InovaUSP), FAU-USP and Galeria Luisa Strina.

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Untitled (Unnatural World)  | 2021

giclée print on matte cotton paper, digital image produced by large scale print screen
unique piece
100 x 80 cm (39.4 x 31.5 in)

The construction of the world

Nelson Goodman in his book Ways of Worldmaking, argues that the creation of new worlds takes place in the establishment of new perspectives on the same world and its symbols, where all possibilities reside. Thus, in these works, the construction of the landscape of other empty and generic worlds serves as an allegorical device for aesthetic tensioning and the construction of narratives and mental experiments.


Denatured Gaia

It is common in Brazil to hear the term “denatured mother”, usually as a charge to women about maintaining a traditional posture dictated by patriarchal values. Outside of this context, the idea of ​​'unnatural' sounds strange: there is no room for the unnatural, atypical, and so we do not refer to it. Another more specific use of the word, to denaturalize, can also be related to the renunciation or loss of the rights of a citizen of a country. The expropriation of the unnatural (in custom and individual possibility) seems to be a recurring theme in technology and its naturalized functional models: the mandatory and compulsive acceptance of the ToS (terms of service), whose penalties are expulsion and cancellation. The terms of social media do not refer here exclusively, but also all types of “employment” mediated by current technologies. The predatory extractivism of human existence is closely linked to that of nature: who is the individual in bigdata, or what is the importance of a single rosewood in the forest? The trees are us, in the best sense. From this, the relationship is created: the denatured gaia is, little by little, being purged of the small points that architect her existence. The small vectors {x: float, y: float, z: float}, which resemble our digital bodies, are exhausted, being deleted, joined and sculpted, until only the suggestion of a landscape is left.

Computational image as painting

Considering these works as paintings is like planning in advance a great conceptual return: the image as we know it develops in pictorial practices, and by remembering the most primordial concepts of their materiality and plasticity we can evoke painting. It is about the confluence of media, rather than the denial of any specific one. For the works in this series, it is interesting to explore its materiality. The production of images is related to extractivism: the algorithms that generate the clouds of points made in the image of natural formations are of great energy and physical consumption, using large amounts of electrical energy and memory allocated in the physical part of the computer, in addition to the computer itself. processing work. Like someone filling a bucket of water, a “bucket” is needed for the information, which is saved as sequences of transistors on and off. The creation process here is close to the criticized cryptocurrency mining process; generates heat, noise and information, which can be captured and modeled. The dimension of the images, quite high in some, is also important because, as they are captured from the screen instead of being rendered, it has a direct correspondence with the physical size of the screens used in the studio. Another conceptual correspondence to painting is the pigment: the work is digital, but its finalization (to exhibit, sell, etc.) is printed on paper. The pigments used in gliclée fine art printing are mineral, similar to those used in the production of acrylic and oil paints; extracted from nature. The paper is made of cotton, another common support in the pictorial image. Thus, by evoking the relationship between digital and pictorial images, I wish to reaffirm the theoretical and philosophical implications of the fact: the digital is the natural, refined.