Dr. Woohoo,

Pasatiempo - - On­stage This Week -

on every­thing from iPhone cases to ten­nis shoes and silk hand­ker­chiefs. Throw in a stint work­ing in stop-mo­tion an­i­ma­tion, video-game de­vel­op­ment, and an affin­ity for the gen­er­a­tive-mu­sic lean­ings of Brian Eno, and the re­sult is an in­formed and in­spired con­tem­po­rary artist who sees the com­bi­na­tion of code, com­merce, and creativ­ity as noth­ing short of Warhol-era art­world his­tory re­peat­ing it­self — but with a much deeper sense of so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity and free-mar­ket rel­e­vance.

The From Pix­els to Prints ex­hibit evolved from a con­ver­sa­tion in Santa Fe. “I had an in­ter­ac­tive piece, Play­ing With Fauna, in the won­der­ful show that Par­al­lel Stu­dios put to­gether at the El Museo Cul­tural de Santa Fe,” Dr. Woohoo said. “Dur­ing the show, I was talk­ing to a gentle­man whose friend was in­ter­act­ing with the piece, and a small group of kids en­tered the scene. I paused our con­ver­sa­tion and told him this was the true test of whether the piece would be deemed suc­cess­ful. … Do they open their mouths in won­der­ment? Do they smile? Do they play? They did! It turns out the gentle­man was Jon Carver, who teaches at Santa Fe Com­mu­nity Col­lege. In De­cem­ber, he asked if I wanted to do a show at SFCC and I said, em­phat­i­cally, yes!”

The in­spi­ra­tion for Dr. Woohoo’s gen­er­a­tive art springs from mul­ti­ple sources, in­clud­ing the emo­tional and phys­i­cal resonance of mu­sic, the cre­ative and nar­ra­tive arcs of cinema, so­cial net­work­ing on the web, the in­ter­ac­tiv­ity of multi-touch de­vices like iPads, the math­e­mat­i­cal qual­i­ties of ar­chi­tec­ture, and the com­po­si­tion of paint­ings by Piet Mon­drian.

While as­pects of his work may hint at the Warhol/Fac­tory no­tion of the re­pro­duc­tion of art — you can, for ex­am­ple, pur­chase a Woohoo-de­signed iPhone case at www.zaz­zle.com — Dr. Woohoo is hell-bent on elim­i­nat­ing same­ness from his gallery-fo­cused reper­toire while si­mul­ta­ne­ously sell­ing his de­signs and ideas in the in­ter­net ether. “In a gallery set­ting, tech­nol­ogy has made such a leap that each piece can orig­i­nate from the same hard­ware and soft­ware but come out look­ing com­pletely dif­fer­ent and elicit a com­par­a­tively alien re­sponse,” he said.

Now, un­pre­dictable hu­man be­hav­ior, har­nessed by an artist’s fi­nesse with com­puter lan­guage, acts as the brush­stroke on Woohoo’s digital can­vas. But is it ran­dom? “I am not a math­e­ma­ti­cian,” Woohoo said, “but I know that within a fi­nite amount of pos­si­bil­i­ties, I can avoid rep­e­ti­tion from hap­pen­ing by us­ing a pseu­do­ran­dom num­ber gen­er­a­tor.” Re­ally?

“ From Pix­els to Prints is also an op­por­tu­nity for peo­ple to ex­plore the in­ter­sec­tion of art and com­merce at a lo­cal level,” Dr. Woohoo said. “Can this kind of art, a sort of Fac­tory 2.0 where in­di­vid­ual in­flu­ence is con­sid­ered, in­spire a new eco­nomic gate­way? And are Santa Fe’s and Al­bu­querque’s ‘cre­ative economies’ ready to sup­port that?” We cer­tainly hope so. For more in­for­ma­tion about the work, and play, of Dr. Woohoo, visit www.dr­woohoo.com.

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