herman de vries

rational structures (1969)

the use of random structures reveals a precise concept of the visual world and of visual experience. any sensory experience is determined by relations between factors, for coramunication these factors can be substituted by any symbols. the simplest visual symbols are black and white, line and square, representing different qualities, extensions, etc. the visual experience can be rendered as soon as relations between two or more factors are indicated. the interrelations between the factors will, if their number is larger than a handfull be so complex that no choice can be made, no preference is possible a priori. by accepting this fact one is lead to accept that a random distribution of the given factors can be as valid as any intuitive or logical method. it includes all possibilities of distribution created by such methods and is therefore of a more general order (not necesserily also a higher order). simultaneously, in the visual arts, works has been carried out on two levels. the work of art has been exposed to a confrontation with the objective world on the level of material construction, and the principles according to which the visual experiences are formalised have been brouqht in corresponcance with the philosophical interpretation of the objective world. the former process is illustrated in the objêts trouvés and contrereliefs, the second in the non-objective works corresponding to axiomatic geometry in their attempt to clarify our mode of thought and insight. the random structures are a consequence of the latter concept and carries it on to a point where it is possible that it will again be able to infiltrate our thinking on other levels. defining the totality of an artefact as consisting of certain known relations and accepting your ignorance of the majority you come closer to reality. the experience thus gained will one day find its reflection in architecture, urbanism, politics and ethics, in our entire culture. a camera that makes 20.000 exposures in a second is to come. a movement of your hand will be a whole night performance. many new modes of vision will come to change our attitude to the world, neither logics nor intuition can forseee how.

troels andersen

source: Troels Andersen, 'rational structures - herman de vries', in foldout Panel 13 Information 1, Nr. 3 (1969) 1.