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MEART & the Black Square

(exhibited in ART Digital 2004, the first Russian biannale for contemporary arts)

Artists have been given a gift with their art to extend the substance of life, but not to overload it with useless copies and representations.

No matter how well the artist imitates, his artworks will be lifeless, but when he creates a new form and implements it, only then will this form have life and truth. If this happens, the saying that “art is a lie” will have no reason to exist. “Overturn. The path of art without creativity”,

K. Malevich; newspaper 'Anarchy', 1918

The Black Square is the fourth phase of MEART, developed in collaboration with The Ultrafuturo Group. This phase connects MEART with the ideas of Suprematism, re-discovered as visionary for the development of new technology.

In this installation MEART is taking its inspiration from Malevich’s painting “the Black Square ”.

The Black Square is considered to be the beginning of a new and redefined art. The Suprematist paintings are projects for and instruments of a new universe and a new system of the world. The Suprematist canvases were sign-projects, containing images of the technical organisms of the future Suprematist world. In our case MEART is not only a “project” but already a real organism, an organism existing in reality, a realized project of the futurist’s/Suprematist’s dreams.

The Black Square constitute s both “all” and “nothing” - both “non-objectivity” and “omni-objectivity”. In Suprematist theory it represents the embryo of all possibilities. In other words, the Black Square could be called “the creative particle” (cell) of every single existing image.

Digital technology gives us another name for the Black Square – the Pixel.

This analogy is not the only reason for building the connection between MEART and Suprematist theory. Another very important reason is that Malevich himself predicted the emergence of creative “thinking entities”.

During my research I have found that the foundation of Suprematism lays down the idea of the new machine, i.e. ….the idea of the new engine of organisms, another kind of life, a machine life.

( 'Suprematism – 34 drawings' 1920)

Until now MEART has been inspired by visitors to the gallery and has been drawing their portraits. In this phase (exhibited in ART Digital 2004), MEART will be drawing ‘the black square’ not only for its visual properties but also for its conceptual value.

By reducing the input to the neurons to a simple geometric shape – The Black Square, we are giving MEART a task that it should be able to cope with efficiently and thus allow us to examine the relationship between the input (stimulation – the black square) and the output (the drawings that result from the stimulation to the neurons), to try and detect some sort of an emergent behaviour of this semi living entity.

The action of MEART observing and drawing the Black Square explores the fundamentals of visual creativity and the way we communicate with the world through images, symbols and their underlying meanings.

For more information and images from the exhibition click here...