MESH: Notes on 4D Systems in Art (1.1)

1. The Fourth Dimension in art can be thought of as a sector in which the material and immaterial intertwine, creating a generative woven form. The material elements stay constant, an expression of the finite, in the integrating fourth dimension. The immaterial can be expanded infinitely, as a derivative continuum, attached to the original material. This complex state for art in a 4D mesh-space is simultaneously existential and perceptual.

2. Time is an immaterial component in 4D art mesh-space. The concept of Time as the 4th Dimension for art is incorrect. This fallacy poses both technical and perceptual problems for the 4D artist and 4D art viewer. Most significantly for both artist and viewer, the misapprehension of Time in 4D art encourages the displacement and obscuration of art itself, during its creation and presentation phases. Time is a distraction for the 4D artist. The Time fallacy in 4D art affects the artist’s transmission of the material. The Time fallacy in 4D art affects the viewer’s reception of the material. Artistic transmission in 4D is technical. Viewer reception in 4D is perceptual. Time distorts the 4D art viewer’s field of vision.

3. The 4D art is still a thing, even if it is projected, reproduced, inferred and so on. The original remains intact, an object. The 4D object combines and integrates with its derivatives in the 4D mesh-space. There it can be thought of as itself and a new thing (simultaneously). To test the validity of 4D original art, one may touch it. “Feeling” in 4D art is prospective, and a proper 4D mesh-space presents the viewer and analyst ample opportunity to experience and interrogate an encounter with a 4D art original. Responses to original 4D art are derivative of the original, not the original itself. Each response is itself an original, though not necessarily original art. Comprehending “original” and the derivative response is essential to a correct understanding of 4D art in its presentation mode (in 4D mesh-space).


Selfie-ops as 4D Definition (China-style)

The hot trend of building environments (Museum of Ice Cream, et al.) to attract crowds of WOW-seeking Selfie-gatherers is a global phenomenon. In 2011 Gavin Allen of the Daily Mail (UK) got ahead of the event-arc and penned a lavishly illustrated article on a promotional art project in China that combined interactive paintings and the ubiquitous mobile camera to suggest a new take on 4D. Which sort of ignores the Platonic assessment of art/illusion (bad thing > artists banned from the Republic) a couple thousand years ago. Allen's story notes the efforts by Chinese players in conjunction with the State to compete with the West w/re Art. If you track the art industrial figures (sales, etc.) you know that the efforts of China to frame itself as a global cultural powerhouse are yielding astonishing results in a short period of time. Lastly, I think it ought to be noted that Yayoi Kusama's installations are structurally similar to the stuff in the China show, the Museum of Ice Cream, and so on.



A Nice Summary of 4D Art (>Art History)

Dali's Christ crucified on a floating hypercube is one canonical 4D citation. Click the image to read a straightforward article at ThoughtCo outlining key points in the art historical narrative for 4D + art. The established proponent of this narrative is Dalrymple Henderson, who published her book on the subject in 1983 (linked below). It was re-issued with an update-chapter a few years ago. Bill Davenport of Glasstire covered the re-release HERE.


4D+ Art: Reading List

These texts (along with Flatland) provide a fundamental introduction to the discipline. Henderson's book has been the go-to art historical resource going on a couple of decades, now. A new chapter in the latest printing adds much needed material. The Fourth Dimension... contains excellent research and approaches 4D+ primarily through the lens of the epistemological, which is a quarter of the story. Mueller's Elements... is as far as I know the first 4D primer. The linking of art & design in the text I am not down with, and I'm not down with the author's basic definition of 4D for art (Time). Yet, the Elements... is a great first classroom text, very user friendly for teachers and students. I'm a big fan of the manifesto. Rudy Rucker is a unique figure and to my mind just the best ambassador for the discipline.

Artie takes the 4D & makes it real/not-real.



Let's get this out of the way. What is 4D Art? Here's a working, minimal definition: the 4Dimension is where material things and immaterial (not-things) perceptibly mingle. Artists can utilize this 4D condition to make art that makes better sense as a multi-dimensional Thing (not-thing). For example - art that exists IRL and also has a virtual "existence" online.

Poppy is a good reference.