ARTIST KAREN HOCHMAN BROWN USES MATH AND MUSIC TO CREATE
ONE-OF-A-KIND DIGITAL PORTRAITS DURING LA’S STARTUP ART FAIR
Karen Hochman Brown
stARTup Art Fair Los Angeles
February 15 to 17, 2019
February 15, 7-10 PM
The Kinney Venice Beach
737 West Washington Blvd
Venice, CA 90292
A self-described high school “math geek” chose instead to study art and has managed to merge her two passions into masterful digital creations of startling power and beauty. Los Angeles artist Karen Hochman Brown has married the flexibility of art and the precision of mathematics into a virtually unlimited paintbox.
“The computer has been tied to my artwork, and my life,” Hochman Brown says. “I never looked back.”
Hochman Brown will be premiering brand new work at the stARTup Art Fair, running February 15th to 17th at The Kinney Venice Beach. You can see more of Hochman Brown’s work in a solo show “Digital Ambrosia” at MOXI, The Wolf Museum of Exploration + Innovation, in Santa Barbara running February 23 to April 7, 2019 as well as Descanso Gardens Sturt Haaga Gallery in “Unusual Views” opening February 10 to June 9, 2019.
Hochman Brown coined the term “digitography” from a combination of photography and digital process. Working from primarily floral and vegetative images, she uses a graphic synthesizer to create custom virtual-paintbrushes, changing settings of endless parameters that react to a visual reference. The brushstrokes are applied one by one based on information such as shape, color, orientation and luminance. In this process, she is not limited to using photographs for reference and can venture into a world of totally algorithmic creations. Results can mimic natural painting styles or come off as purely graphic. In addition to 2-D prints, the artist processes images over time to develop animations.
Most recently, Hochman Brown has begun to work with photo portraits. In the “Portrait Project”, she turns portraits of people into synthesized pieces of visual music. Based on the model of the sound synthesizer, Hochman Brown creates custom brushes that play upon the photograph’s visual information in the same way that a synthesizer plays a riff of music. The computer assists the drawing process, generating brushstrokes that change based on color, shape, texture, luminance and other information found in the photo file, changes that include anything from the angel the stroke is applies to the actual structure of the brush. Her portraits are lively and colorful variations on the subject’s visage.
These inspiring works expand the boundaries of new media and technology-driven art with their lush and evocative depictions.
About Karen Hochman Brown
Karen Hochman Brown received her B.A. in Art from Pitzer College, has continued to study math, and did post-graduate work at California College of the Arts and Crafts where her Master’s thesis introduced Construction Geometry via Art, a Junior High School curriculum she taught at Pasadena Waldorf School. She continued to study the interconnections of math and art via technology at UCLA studying graphic design in late-nineties. Her work has been widely exhibited in California and the United States.