The images presented here are an ongoing project by artist Alex May who has developed a series of digital algorithms to create photographs by combining thousands of frames of video into a single image that reveals a world in complex motion.
They rarely present a clear starting and ending point in time, rather a swirling mass of collected trails that inhabit the same space. We can see the interplay of birds and architecture as seagulls effortlessly skim around the walls of Piazza San Marco in Venice, and the vibrant lights of Vienna at night seen from a taxi, capturing the exhilarating feeling of rushing through a foreign city at night.
“With recognisable landmarks and corrupted textures, the image seems both a landscape and microscopic zoomed in relief. As though there is something larger at work, with a design for the landscape that we can’t quite comprehend from a human scale.”S. Hall
Every algorithm creates a very different type of image and the process of selecting the right one and fine-tuning its many variables can take hours to ‘develop’ the final shot. From taking the initial filming to the final appearance of the image, the process requires a great deal of patience and practice of slowing down and being ‘in the world’.
Algorithmic Photography captures time and motion through space in a way that is instantly recognisable and completely new.
“I’m so amazed with your work because it makes me think about time in a very different way.”@otrohernandezinsta
A selection of high quality photographic prints are being made available for purchase exclusively on this website direct from the artist. New prints will become available periodically so sign up to the newsletter to get notified before they appear on the public site.
Alex May is a British artist exploring a wide range of digital technologies, including algorithmic photography, video projection mapping, interactive installations, generative works, robots, performance, and video art.
He has exhibited internationally including at Tate Modern in London, the Victoria & Albert Museum, Royal Academy of Art, Wellcome Collection, Science Museum, Francis Crick Institute (permanent collection), Eden Project (permanent collection), LABoral in Spain, Ars Electronica in Linz, Bletchley Park, Goldsmiths, One Canada Square in Canary Wharf, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Caracas, Venezuela, the Science Gallery in Dublin, Princeton University, University of Calgary (international visiting artist 2016), Texas A&M University, and the Beall Center for Art + Technology, University of California, Irvine.
Alex is a Visiting Research Fellow: Artist in Residence with the computer science department of University of Hertfordshire since 2011, a Digital Media Arts MA sessional lecturer at the University of Brighton since 2012, and the University of Hertfordshire since 2019.
He is head of Projective Geometry at The Institute of Unnecessary Research.