My exploration into the visualization of data started down a path which eventually led me to the concept of generative art and emergence. Generative art can be described as a piece which has a degree of autonomy; I like to think this means that the artist will be as surprised by each outcome as the viewer. Emergence on the other hand is what happens when you give objects a very simple set of rules to follow (ex: move, stay in a group, don’t bump into others, etc.) which cause the interactions between multiple objects to form interesting and unexpected patterns.

Combining these two ideas, I have created an object, a small hexagon, with a specific set of instructions telling it what color to be. The “map” starts randomly, and the tiny shapes begin to form patterns based on popular vote. If one shape is surrounded by a different color, it has a chance to be converted, there is also a small chance that a shape will be converted without any pressure, which has led to some exciting coups. The patterns created by these interactions are unique every time, but are all representative of how an ideal or belief can spread and consume while competing with those around it.

Kiri Stolz


Kiri is a third year New Media major hailing from Ponoka, Alberta. She has
a special passion for illustration and graphic design, visualization, and
generative art. Her dreams and aspirations include, but are not limited
to: building a Media Arts hippie commune somewhere in a Manitoba swamp,
owning a 1970 Plymouth Barricuda (in rally red), and getting around to
organizing her music library.