iconographies #81-20 adoration after Botticelli, 2015

10x archival inkjet prints
24 x 33 cm each

The focus of this work is the non-human interpreter: the algorithm. Quayola subjects Adoration of the Magi by Sandro Botticelli to readings by custom software to examine its visual characteristics. He then allows a visible version of the readings to be produced by the computer: the predicate relating to the painting presented in a quasi-verbal form. It is by all means a language that should be familiar and understandable to humans. On the contrary, an inaccessible translation appears.

The aesthetic intent of such hermeneutic operation becomes evident when the artist uses it to unfold a temporal dichotomy and puts into dialogue as prints exhibited next to each other—two complementary interpretive forms. On one side the human one: a classical, meaningful and carefully worded composition of sentences by the father of Renaissance art criticism Giorgio Vasari. On the other side the computer one: a hyper-contemporary and illegible flow of technical verbosity.

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