Saturday, June 30, 2012

Foliage and snail. Follaje y caracol

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Foliage and snail. Follaje y caracol by Myriam B. Mahiques is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

The collage environments: the Happenings

Pop Artist Yayoi Kusama’s Spaced Out. See the multiplication of the space and the idea of infinite in the location of mirrors and lights. Internet download.

Happening was an event that combined elements of painting, poetry, music, dance, and theatre and staged them as a live action. The term Happening was coined by American artist Allan Kaprow in the 1950s. The nature of Happenings was influenced by Italian Futurist performance, where the convention of “proscenium architecture” was assaulted, where the “actors” could consist of moving lights, machinery, and the audience, and simultaneity noise-music were developed. (
Probably, it can be seen as the negation of the Architecture, of the static building, the space is shaped by weird acts and consequent behaviors.
With the rise of Pop Art, both the environment and the Happening took on a new and special importance. …One was that Pop specialized in the “given”; this led artists to experiment with the literal reproduction of reality…There was too, the consuming interest taken by Pop artists in the Phenomena of popular culture, among them such enfolding experiences as amusement arcades and side-shows in circuses”. (Lucie-Smith, 1995)

Pop Artist Yayoi Kusama. Endless Love Room. 1965-6.

The Happenings were designed for a brief life, they are dead every time they happen. It is an ephemeral game, the game of obsolescence felt in a certain state of mind; the objective is to stimulate as much fantasy as possible.
The situations can be commented by the stories told through the years, they can be printed in photographs, but you need to participate to feel the real nature of a “Happening”.

Jim Dine, The Car Crash, 1960.

Stuart Brisley. And For Today. 1972. From

Rudolf Schwarzkogler. Action. From

These are the rules of the game as explained by Allan Kaprow (edited by Jeff Kelly):
1) The line between the Happening and daily life should be kept as fluid and perhaps indistinct as possible. For example, two cars collide in a freeway; violet liquid pours out of the broken radiator of one of them, and in the back seat of the other there is a huge load of dead chickens. The cops check into the incident, plausible answers are given and this is a normal situation of an accident.
2) Themes, materials, actions, and the associations they evoke are to be gotten from anywhere except from the arts, their derivatives and their milieu. Eliminate the arts and whatever is familiar to them, as art galleries, cultural buildings, nightclubs, etc. Then, a separate art can be developed. This is the goal, because “Happening” is not a total art, it is a source of energy in a “quasi art” with an uncertain identity.
3) The Happening should be dispersed over several widely spaced, sometimes moving and changing locales. A single performance space tends to be static and limiting (like painting only the center of the canvas). The stage theater is static and prevents the use of a thousand possibilities; movies can be watched, but not physically experienced. So, Happening can be developed in several points in a trafficked avenue, or different floors and rooms in an apartment house, or in different streets or cities or anywhere around the globe. This will increase the tension and will provide independence to each act with no interconnections.
4) Time, closely bound up with things and spaces should be variable and independent of the convention of continuity. Whatever is to happen should do so in its natural time, without respecting a structured scheme.
5) The composition of all materials, actions, images and their times and spaces should be undertaken in an artless and again, practical a way as possible. It means the avoidance of form theory associated with the arts, such as a serial technique, dynamic symmetry, etc.
6) Happenings should be unrehearsed and performed by non professionals, only once. Ex. a house is burned down; love letters are left on a field until the rain ruins them.
So Happenings were social manifestations materialized in a collage environment sensibility, a situation composed of sounds, time-durations, gestures, sensations, smells. The spectator was bombarded with sensations which he had to order on his own responsibility. Sometimes, the artists who took part in them seemed to engage in a desperate search for the unacceptable, for behavior which would restore them to a position as rebels an enemies of society (Lucie-Smith, 1995). For instance, the English artist Stuart Brisley who spent many hours almost motionless in a bath full of water and animal entrails. And there were also expressions of sado-masochistic fantasy. With an opposite funny tone, the Englishmen Gilbert and George performed a piece called Singing Sculptures, in which the two of them, with gilded faces, stood on a plinth and mimed to the music-hall song “Underneath the Arches”. The idea was to focus on style-stylishness, and the question of the division, or the lack of it, between the creator and what he creates.

Gilbert and George. Singing Sculpture, 1970. From


Kaprow, Allan; Kelley, Jeff. Essays on the Blurring of Art and Life. University of California Press. 2003
Lucie-Smith., Edward. Movements in Art since 1945. P. 155 –158. New York, 1995

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Torre en la piedra. Tower in the stone

Esta es una intervención digital sobre el cuadro ¨Ventrílocuo¨ de Heidi Taillefer, que he presentado en el grupo de Intervenciones Digitales de Letras Kiltras.

Ventrílocuo. De Heidi Taillefer
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Torre en la piedra. Tower in the stone by Myriam B. Mahiques is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Crab under the water. Cangrejo bajo el agua

Though at first I´ve seen a crab under the water, I didn´t want to continue with the definition of the animal, as I also have seen a kind of Chinese or Japanese letter or pictogram. Basically, this is an exercise of transparencies, color against color and the movement of water that doesnt´ follow an ideal displacement of the crab.

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Crab under the water. Cangrejo bajo el agua by Myriam B. Mahiques is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Fractal angels in the grove. Ángeles fractales en el bosque

Ethereal angels of bright light in a dark grove, intertwined with the foliage. It seems to me that they are beating their wings...
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Fractal angels in the grove. Ángeles fractales en el bosque by Myriam B. Mahiques is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Vintage perfume bottles. Botellas de perfume antiguas

Same digital painting of vintage perfume bottles, in color and in black and white

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Vintage perfume bottles. Botellas de perfume antiguas by Myriam B. Mahiques is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Relative proportion of the hand and foot. From The Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci

Study of hands. By Leonardo Da Vinci. Image from

If you hold your hand with the fingers straight out and close together you will find it to be of the same width as the widest part of the foot, that is where it is joined onto the toes.
And if you measure from the prominence of the inner ancle to the end of the great toe you will find this measure to be as long as the whole hand.
From the top angle of the foot to the insertion of the toes is equal to the hand from wrist joint to the tip of the thumb.
The smallest width of the hand is equal to the smallest width of the foot between its joint into the leg and the insertion of the toes.
The width of the heel at the lower part is equal to that of the arm where it joins the hand; and also to the leg where it is thinnest when viewed in front.
The length of the longest toe, from its first division from the great toe to its tip is the fourth of the foot from the centre of the ancle bone to the tip, and it is equal to the width of the
mouth. The distance between the mouth and the chin is equal to that of the knuckles and of the three middle fingers and to the length of their first joints if the hand is spread, and equal to the distance from the joint of the thumb to the outset of the nails, that is the fourth part of the hand and of the face.
The space between the extreme poles inside and outside the foot called the ancle or ancle bone _a b_ is equal to the space between the mouth and the inner corner of the eye.
The foot, from where it is attached to the leg, to the tip of the great toe is as long as the space between the upper part of the chin and the roots of the hair _a b_; and equal to five sixths of the face.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Ali Baba´s cave. La cueva de Alí Baba

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¨Accordingly he went among the shrubs, and, receiving the door concealed behind them, stood before it, and said, “Open, Simsim” Whereupon the door instantly flew wide open. Now ‘Ali Baba expected a dark, dismal cavern, but was surprised to see a well-lighted and spacious chamber, lighted from an opening at the top of the rock, and filled with all sorts of provisions, rich bales of silk, embroideries, and valuable tissues, piled upon one another, gold and silver ingots in great heaps, and money in bags. The sight of all these riches made him suppose that this cave must have been occupied for ages by robbers, who had succeeded one another. ‘Ali Baba went boldly into the cave, and collected as much of the gold coin, which was in bags, as his three asses could carry. When he had loaded them with the bags, he laid wood over them so that they could not be seen. Then he stood before the door, and pronouncing the words, “Shut, Simsim!” the door closed of itself; and he made the best of his way to the town.¨

Read the full story of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves:

Monday, June 18, 2012


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The cornucopia (in Latin also cornu copiae) or horn of plenty is a symbol of abundance and nourishment, commonly a large horn-shaped container overflowing with produce, flowers, nuts, other edibles, or wealth in some form. Originating in classical antiquity, it has continued as a symbol in Western art, and in North America is particularly associated with the Thanksgiving holiday.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Dome of a catholic church with painted saints. Domo de una iglesia católica con santos pintados

This is my abstract interpretation of a dome inside a catholic church. The cut of light in the twilight, a central image of Jesus king standing, surrounded by many saints with colorful cloaks.
In a straight line above Jesus, I added the Sancti Spiritu, and the red flame above, maybe God commanding over us all.
Below, the ribs taking the vertical loads to the ground. The hard shape of the square is contrasting with the ¨kaleidoscope¨ inside.

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Dome of a catholic church with painted saints. Domo de una iglesia católica con santos pintados by Myriam B. Mahiques is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Friday, June 15, 2012

What is a fractal?

This is the Mandelbrot set. I've generated it with Fractal Explorer and used the Zoom tool to analyze the autosimilarity. Every  part of it has the same organization in hierarchical levels. Personal archives
I've generated this fractal as a variation of a flipped Mandelbrot. This fractal has only local organizations. Personal archives.
This fractal is a variation of the previous fractal, same origin, a flipped Mandelbrot. Personal archives.

Fractals represent the dynamic systems, the geometry of Nature, the infinite retro-feedings, in synthesis, what cannot be measured in Euclidian terms. A fractal is a way of seeing the infinite.
The term that in Latin means fragmentary or cut, was presented by the Polish mathematician Benoît Mandelbrot (1924 -) for the first time in his book "Les Objets Fractals: Forme, Hasard et Dimension" (1975).
Fractals have not a definition yet, but their characteristic properties are enumerated as follows:
A fractal has a fine structure; this is detail in arbitrarily small scales.
A fractal is too irregular to be described with the traditional Euclidian geometry, so much local as globally.
Frequently, a fractal has a certain form of autosimilarity, maybe approximated or statistical.
In general, their "fractal dimension" is bigger than their topological dimension. Geometric fractals can be generated in a very simple recursive way. (Spinadel V., Perera J. G, Perera J.H. p. 2, 2000).
Many objects in Nature are better geometrically described as fractals, with autosimilarity in all scales. For instance, the universe consist on clusters of galaxies, organized in clusters of clusters of galaxies, and so on.
Although an effort has been made to characterize the fractals geometrically, there has not been a lot of progress in understanding its dynamic origin. We have a tendency to think that the universe is formed starting from static structures because the dynamics that forms these structures has bigger scale than the period of observation that can be the life of a human being. The earthquakes that we observe last some few seconds, and the formation of the crack seems static, but it is built in millions of years.
Therefore, the origin of the fractals is rather a dynamic problem, not a geometric one. The laws of their physics are local, fractals usually are not organized in the biggest distances.
Systems are fractal when at some critical point, a phase of continuous transition takes place. Fractals and chaotic systems possess the property of autosimilarity.
In geographical terms it is first spoken of SPACING that refers to the population or the activities of the centers, but not at the physical distance. As we move away from the center, the level of complexity increases and it is governed under a HIERARCHICAL organization, typical of fractality. And the MULTI-SCALE organization, of evolutionary processes from the center to the periphery also contains fractal characters. Chaotic groups have tendency to present fractional dimensions.
Summarizing, both concepts chaos and fractality, are supplemented. If we relate the urban morphology with the corresponding society, we would have the following theoretical structure:
MORFOLOGY /Fractal Geometry/ Simple rules(formula) /Complex behaviour
SOCIETY /Auto-organization/ Complex grouping /Simple emergent behaviour

Drain in the street. Desagüe callejero

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Drain in the street. Desagüe callejero by Myriam B. Mahiques is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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