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Maths-Art Seminars at London Knowledge Lab: 3-D Drawing - Modelling and Projection

Artist Gary Woodley talks about his use of mathematics in the creation of 3-D architectonic drawings

When using the concepts of geometry as a source to make three-dimensional art works certain adjustments have to be made to one’s thought processes. The postulates of geometry are of surfaces without thickness and volumes without substance. They are immaterial. In attempting to translate this information into physical objects, situations or environments, then any surface must have a thickness and therefore a volume, and any closed surface must have a volume or a wall thickness. The paradoxes that can occur through this translation are of particular interest for me, forming an initial point of departure, rather than a frustration.

My primary concerns have remained with the coding, distribution and orientation of edge, surface, volume and space through the use of projective, descriptive and topological geometries, and predominately (since 1985) with extending my 'Impingement' series of architectonic drawings - large scale immaterial forms thrown onto the given environment. The first of these works were resolved through the development of simple 3-D drawing machines that could generate spheres and ellipsoids, and could to some extent draw around corners. These were extended by the incorporation of lasers and precision positioning instruments that offered accurate planar configurations and allowed for a larger scale. Around 1996, 3-D computer programs became more useful, predominately as a ‘sketchbook’ space where concepts and configurations could be developed. More complex curvilinear forms could be explored, although initial studies could only be realised in model form. Later, thorough site measurements of rectilinear architecture were taken in order to build reasonably accurate computer models of potential sites. Once the ‘impingement’ form was determined, a full scale paper pattern of all the flat surfaces of the site (floors, walls, ceilings, windows) could be printed with all lines of intersection located. A lot of paper, and slow in most cases, but it works. My current research is in establishing a broader range of methods for measuring the more complex and eccentric elements of architectural form, and then establishing a means of projecting the modified information back onto the site.


Gary Woodley | talks


Date and Time:

17 April 2007 at 6:00 am


1 hour 30 minutes



London Knowledge Lab
23-29 Emerald St
020 7763 2156

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