Hawaii's historic FIRST computer art exhibition


Rodney Chang's Show Statement


     The white canvas has always been the beginning for my making of two-dimensional art.  So it was with great excitement when I discovered the illsuion of black infinite space of the computer terminal before programming colored images.  As a painter I now had an opportunity to paint with limitless space as background.  All of a sudden it was possible to place my sculptures in simulated environments.  These new aesthetic possibilities led to the inspiration of creating "A Space Show."  My exhibited works here at the Honolulu Club form a conglomerate personal imaginary world seeded by inner fantasies and a lifelong love affair with Space.  Background becomes subject through the creation of an outer space viewer orientation.  As a group of works I hope it conveys a pleasing sensing of the presence of painting and scupture, both working together through the thread of digitalized illusions of outer space.


"Explorations of Space" -The Arts section, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, August 17, 1986
By Marcia Morse, Art Critic


"... Rodney Chang's mixed media work (photographs of computer generated images) offers a much cooler , more cerebral view of the changing dimensions of space as both fantasy construct and real phenomenon.   Chang uses his own paintings and sculpture, among other things, as raw material for manipulation and transformation with graphic software, capturing key images in photographic stills.

     Chang is, at the moment, one of the few, if not the only artist to exhibit computer-based art, though there are a number of indications that such work will become increasingly visible.   Viewing a grouping of of work such as that presented by Chang at the Honolulu Club ( a smaller selection of work is also on view at Honolulu Federal Savings and Loan at Kahala Mall) is a reminder that exploring a new imaging technology has an implicit and corollary challenge - that of developing a distinctive personal vision.  Chang has been able to achieve the first objective but has yet to achieve the second."


Elements of Design/Composition for Computer "Space" Series - artist's diary,  March 26, 1986 

-Using Lumena software system with IBM personal computer
-Early investigation of developing a computer art sytle or approach to the medium


1.  original paintings/sculptures photo input
2.  computer color maps and modifications
3.  galactic background to add computer field infinity illusion
4.  pair traditional with new: ex. computer look with traditional forms and landscapes
5.  feelings for landscape and times of day
6.  suggestibility of different colors, shapes, steps and pulling together to make obvious concrete subject matter       imagery
7.  pair landscape painting with scuptural object in foreground
8.  simulated found computer generated textures: ex. embroidery, silk
9.  drawing graphic quality
10. superpositioning of different photos, ex. cosmic universe
11. black and white photos of artist, including natural objects, artificial objects, sectional close ups of things
12. flattening 2D effect on input of sculpture
13. cropping
14. multiples, stopping processing during decrease/increase of size or perspective changes
15. perspective changes
16. random check through other color maps
17. magnification and cropping of a part of a previous piece
18. video animation color checks
19. theme ideas, look for elements to compose synthesized overall  picture
20. collage techniques: composition, relative size changes of different input elements
21. use of color to create depth and foreground and accent areas
22. use of color to emote feelings
23. use of graphic straight drafting lines vs. expressionistic brush strokes
24. cleaning/deleting effect of copy processing of original photos
25. overlapped shaped photocopies composite fed into video camera
26. input of separate background and foreground objects for later combinations of different sorts
27. different color execution of object and background and later overlapping (same map) or working background        and object in black and white and later uniform color application
28. adding star stippling
29. horizontal or vertical distortion of original images
30. adding color to surface quality of original sculpture: computer enhancement on 2D level of sculpture
31. Hawaiiiana, New York, universal, cosmic, nuclear, surreal, sculptural, classical, expressionistic, the unexpected themes
32. black border to enhance matting/framing; 9x12 format of slide to color photography or serigraphy
33. photographic abstracts with further computer distortion and surreal color editing
34. image simplification (photocopy drop out, clean up manually in computer with pen)
35. image complicating: adding detail to original image: ex. modify shape to look like believeable figure
36. avoid typical stereotypical commercial computer "graphics"
37. impromptu, spontaneous directions for ongoing work
38. avoidance of the expected, surprisal value
39. establishment of photo files for potential computer input by subject matter
40. color schemes
41. idea of computer paintings as environments for scuptural input
42. multiples of sculptural elements, different sizes and distortions
43. different color applications of same final image (series)
44. combining space environment with traditional subject matter, such as landscape; space station serves as             "rennaissance window"  technique
45. drop shadow technique for sculptural objects in foreground
46. starting idea of creating computer forms, use as photo models for sculpted styrofoam to be casted in aluminum        and sprayed flat black to simulate lava (computer lava aluminum series?)
47. Columbia accident: add to space series, a serious piece
48. formalism in images of constructivism, paired with the more free form expressionistic and naturalistic objects
49. pairing oriental with Western feelings
50. placing oriental in futuristic context
51. close up of structural planes to frame objects and capture sense of staged containment
52. experimental  spiritual approach
53. sense of cut out, shapes for serigraphy ease afterwards
54. humor
55. postivie feelings for life, nature, the universe and man
56. subordination of man into stage of larger environment
57. activation of surfaces through color, texture simulation or photo enhancement through computer or overlapping
58. color serial gradations
59. color utilization in image surveillance from mother palette
60. complementary color contrast to make color jump/recede relative to each other
61. framing format - off-white mat with black glossy lacquer frames
62. kaleidascopic photo background
63. fingers sized/modelled assemblages
64. pairing traditional western with avante garde
65. consideration to do follow up acrylic paintings from computer images
66. render color completed computer images as B&W photographs
67. follow up Hawaiian, dental and calligraphy series completed previously