Landscapes

Those were the days!  Traveling in the car West then East.  Drifting to and from the darkroom, printing evening after evening.  Deciding to make digital projects, and spend 24 hr. days in the studio whipping them up!  It was great to be an artist!

It was a pretty elaborate show, when I put up the show.  Lots of pictures.  Four computers.  A wall mural.  It seemed like it mattered!

Two computers ran the first version of the ocean simulation.  One recited poetry.  One ran an interactive simulation of the gallery.

There was a giant wall mural of a beach at sunset.

The Marianne Boesky gallery is pleased to announce Dan Torop's second New
York show.  Description of work follows.


Chronologically:

Ocean pictures -- A couple winters ago I went to the ocean a lot.
Initially, I stood at the edge, then walked in.  It was cold, so later I
stood on a step ladder and eventually used waders.  It was interesting to be
at the edge of something large and strange and seemingly random.

Poetry computer -- I was interested by the ability of a computer to blindly
create models of language with no knowledge of meaning.  I taught my
computer to do this.  I used as input things I typed at 3 AM.  I made it
speak extemporaneously: as it came up with new words it spoke them, then
forgot them.

Misc. pictures -- I went on a lot of trips, drove up the St. Lawrence, drove
around Lake Superior, drove to the Chesapeake and the Albemarle Sound, drove
cross country twice, and went to Finland.  Not many trips resulted in
pictures.  Still, I tried.  I went to the pine barrens a lot and ended up
with one picture only much later after I read John McPhee's book and went
back again.

Constructed pictures -- I had occasional days or weeks of clarity when I
saw how to make an image.  For example, I read a Joan Didion essay about
soldiers being buried and found myself crying and it occurred to me that if
I felt that strongly I should dig my own graves and photograph them.  I
tried to figure out how a Jew would mark a simple grave but ended up making
crosses out of 2x4s.

Ocean models -- Eventually, I started thinking about the ocean again.  It
was summer, and I dislike the beach during the summer.  I had recently
played Syphon Filter and was struck by a beautiful and dreamy scene in a
misty park at night.  I thought it would be interesting to create the ocean
in a computer.  As with the poetry machine, I wanted it to unfold before me
in real time.  It took a while to research the math.

Electronic oceans - While trying to get the ocean program to run fast
enough, the bugs often produced interesting alternative physics.  I
photographed these scenes.  When I left on a trip, I would feel sad about
leaving the ocean behind, so I would walk around the model to a beautiful
spot and wait til the moment was right and take pictures.

Pennsylvania photographs - I would bring the computer up to a house in
the country to work on it.  One day while going on a walk my light meter
broke, and it turned out that taking photographs without the light meter was
helpful.  I enjoyed very much being in the country and have a place to stay
there.

Gallery model - I was worried about how many pictures I could fit on a wall
for this show.  I removed the ocean from the ocean model and put in surfaces
representing the gallery.  It became interesting to figure out how to
describe the space to the computer and to be there when I wasn't there.