I was collaborating with a couple of different artists I met through discord or twitter who both had a lot more clout than me, Latent Dream and Mueo Art. Working with their art, two small bits of lore made themselves up in my mind: an arcade machine possessed by “Zeus” (recalling the Matic Daemons) and gates to the underworld like they supposedly have in New Orleans voodoo. I had a dream one night in the midst of working with Latent Dream where I had to rescue a kid from these kind of gates underground in Chicago. So I wondered and searched about different gates to the underworld people believed in or shared superstitions about, and then combined that concept with some of the flavor of Santeria (just to make it distinct from flat-out copying the voodoo concepts). Santeria is a “syncretic” religion that, in my estimation, plays some of the same kinds of games that gnostics and hermeticism plays with symbolism and combining identities. That is, in Santeria you have to appease the Orisha – and combining the idea of the seven gates and the Orisha meant just kind of riffing on that idea. Alan Moore’s Promethea was really interesting to me when I was younger, and so an artistic flight of fancy on occult themes didn’t seem as dark and moody as some people like to make it. So two collaborations were created – “zeus_sentient_arcade” and “first_gate_of_chicago_oya” fit kind of a new theme that had a lot more drawn splashes and energy coming out of them.
Laser Show Last Will and Testament of Myron Starets
This kind of glowing energy look had been a constant since Jesse Cathode, and adding the crackling energy made me want to experiment with more uses of it. While still head-down coding for artblocks, I built another little simple script just called “zap” – and used the wild lines and angular shapes it generated to start a new series called “laser_show_last_will_and_testament_of_myron_starets.” This has its own whole lore – an employee of a planetarium secretly crafted binders full of CDs of his last will and testament in the form of laser shows. He disappears and the staff discovers the binders, and this art is what it’s like to watch them (not literally the shows). This series marked a more traditional return to Known Origin stuff, having taken a break from that since the Brother Melon series. “Starets” is a Russian concept of a spiritual leader that is non-clergy, and I liked the idea of the surname of Myron (may he rest in peace) hinting that maybe Myron knew something we don’t – that maybe his series is meant to unlock something.
Coding the program for that series made me want to experiment with some more scripted pattern creation – and I worked on a series for sickvibes.xyz based on a program I made I was calling melon_slush. It’s not complicated, but it created detailed patterns that I loved, and I made a series of those for screensaverworld.com that were infused with $VIBES.