Casey Reas


Casey Reas


bitforms gallery

ArandaLasch and Casey Reas, Primitives (This Could be an Extraordinary Find), 2013. Right: Casey Reas, Ultraconcentrated, 2013. Installation view, bitforms gallery, New York, 2013.
September 20, 2013

Casey Reas


September 5–October 12, 2013 

bitforms gallery nyc
529 West 20th St, 2nd Fl
New York NY 10011

View exhibition guide (PDF)
View installation photos
View video documentation

bitforms gallery is pleased to announce the US debut of new work by the Los Angeles-based artist Casey Reas. ULTRACONCENTRATED is his first New York solo exhibition in over five years, marking a departure from past works based on emergent systems. Since 2008, Reas has collaborated on a number of architecturally scaled commissions. These projects have ranged widely, including stage set design for the band Yeasayer in 2012 with ArandaLasch; a permanent video projection for the nighttime façade of Frank Gehry’s New World Symphony building in Miami Beach, created with Tal Rosner; a mural with Ben Fry on the campus of MIT; and Clad, a set of sculptures exhibited at the 12th Venice Architecture biennial with the davidclovers studio. Presently on view at the LA MoCA, Textile Room is a video sculpture featuring projections by Reas in collaboration with the studio P-A-T-T-E-R-N-S.

Reas’s latest work inhabits the increasingly voluminous, yet invisible, spaces of information systems and mass communication. Using a variety of materials, his new projects explore the behavior of television signals and entropy. Live video-driven software systems are featured in ULTRACONCENTRATED, as well as C-prints, laser-etched anodized aluminum pieces, and an illuminated sculpture created with ArandaLasch.

The series “Signal to Noise” intentionally disrupts the information of local broadcast signals. It investigates the field of technical images, as theorized by philosopher Villem Flusser, such as visual information transmitted as data, which relies on text-based instructions to “write” a picture. In the creation of this work, television content was captured from the air with an antenna. Reas edited and then processed the appropriated material with his own custom software, which runs live in the gallery. The programmed logic is visible as a geometric lattice, building the illusion of a surface.

In these works, software’s capacity for precision and order is subverted. Each generative animation in the series scrambles a 20-minute segment of television captured from a major US network, such as ABC, NBC, Fox or CBS. They fracture and distort the intended images and narrative to craft alternate, imagined spaces. Their construction is comparable to early twentieth-century collages built from the media of that time, and mid-century video collage. Taking a Dada approach to the raw materials, each piece is silent and named after a specific moment from the broadcast script.

A fully illustrated exhibition guide is available online and at the gallery.

Casey Reas (b. 1972, Ohio) writes software to explore conditional systems as art. Through defining emergent networks and layered instructions, he has established a unique area of visual experience that builds upon concrete art, conceptual art, experimental video, and collage. While dynamic, generative software remains his core medium, work in variable media including prints, objects, installations, and performances materialize from his visual systems.

His software, prints, and installations have been featured widely in solo and group exhibitions at museums and galleries in the United States, Europe, and Asia. Recent venues include the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Art Institute of Chicago, and recent commissions have been awarded by the Whitney Museum of American Art and the New World Symphony in Miami. Reas’s work is in a range of private and public collections, including the Centre Georges Pompidou and the Victoria and Albert Museum. 

Reas recently co-wrote and designed the book 10 PRINT CHR$(205.5+RND(1)); : GOTO 10 (MIT Press, 2013). Reas and Fry published Processing: A Programming Handbook for Visual Designers and Artists, a comprehensive introduction to programming within the context of visual media (MIT Press, 2007). With Chandler McWilliams and Lust, Reas published Form+Code in Design, Art, and Architecture (Princeton Architectural Press, 2010), a nontechnical introduction to the history, theory, and practice of software in the visual arts. Reas’s Process Compendium 2004–2010 documents six years of his work exploring the phenomena of emergence through software.

He is a professor at the University of California, Los Angeles. Reas holds a master’s degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Media Arts and Sciences as well as a bachelors degree from the School of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning at the University of Cincinnati. With Ben Fry, Reas initiated Processing in 2001. Processing is an open source programming language and environment for the visual arts.

ArandaLasch is a New York-based architectural studio dedicated to experimental research and innovative building. Established in 2003 by Benjamin Aranda and Chris Lasch, the studio designs buildings, installations and objects through a deep investigation of materials and structure. Winners of the United States Artists Award and Young Architects Award in 2007, their early architectural projects are the subject of the book Pamphlet Architecture #27: Tooling.

ArandaLasch has exhibited their work internationally in galleries and institutions dealing with design and architecture. In 2008 they were commissioned by the MoMA in New York to produce a large-scale installation in the museum. They collaborated with Matthew Ritchie on The Morning Line, a work commissioned by TBA-21 that has travelled to Venice, Seville, Istanbul and Vienna. In addition to commercial and residential projects in New York, they completed a 42,000-square-foot temporary structure for Design Miami in 2008 and 2009. ArandaLasch were featured in both recent 2008 and 2010 Venice Architecture Biennials. ArandaLasch continually develops experimental furniture products that explore new concepts in fabrication and assembly and are represented by Johnson Trading Gallery in New York. They are currently working on their first large commercial building in Miami. 

For images and more information, please visit: / /

For further details, please contact info [​at​] or call (212) 366 6939.


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