Hunter of Light / Hermes Tychomachos
In an attempt to approximate a possible form for the “ultimately conceptual artwork” might take, Yiannis Melanitis defines it as a photon on a surface, apropos of painting, or, concerning sculpture, as a photon in a predefined space. The minimum conceptualisation, which is the minimum necessary light functioning as an information carrier, is defined as 1 ARTBIT. In the atelier, the posture of the artist is set as an observer of light, under conditions where detection is very intricate. (The basic light unit, a photon, can normally be observed only when it disappears. The eye absorbs photons, destroying and translating them into information.) Therefore the “ideal” can be observed only indirectly, by means of a hunting and trapping mechanism.
Methodology of the mechanism
Directing a laser beam over an array of glass tubes, the random projective reflections of light, were recorded on vid- eo. After twenty-one days of operating the device, the configuration of Figure1 appeared, immediately identified as Hermes Logius. (statue belonging to the collection Ludovisi, today at Palazzo Altemps Rome).
Then, the formation of the installation was remodelled, in order to mechanically produce the initial conditions, analys- ing the data at intervals of about seven days, in order to identify possible forms within randomness. The entire spectrum of visible experience could potentially be produced through this simple device, in a possible emergence of all forms we investigate. Generalising, we could say that if the ultimate shape of a representation of a given idea lies hidden within nature, the emergence strategy, is to be realised via randomness. [personified by the god Hermes, he may be called Hermes Tychomachos, the one who battles (machetai) against fortune (tyche )].