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Dynamic Color Fields


Dynamic Color Fields


  • Input: Max/MSP
  • Output: Video


Dynamic Color Fields is influenced by the Color Field painting historical art movement.

The Color Field painting style was derived from other abstract avenues of art, and began during the 1940s and remained prominent through the 1960s. The notable features of this style of painting were the large fields of solid color, often represented as flat on the canvas.

The Max patch is designed to emulate the Color Field painting works of artists such as Mark Rothko and Barnett Newman. Much of Rothko’s work featured two or three larger fields of color, which varied in hue and size across the canvas. Newman’s work on the other hand featured long stripes overlaid on a solid color background, which he described as “zips”.
Dynamic Color Fields represents both of these styles in a completely generative manner, and can be played indefinitely with each play being unique.

There is also musical element to the piece, which facilitates the images being generated on-screen while simultaneously playing a part in producing them. When the notes are triggered it sends new values to the x and y of the re-sample object in the patch. This in turn determines the number of blocks seen in the visualization, with higher numbers eventually resulting in more zips, and lower numbers creating a more Rothko like canvas focusing on only a few fields of color.

Max/MSP Patch