Gary Greenfield

Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science
Mathematics and Computer Science, University of Richmond
Richmond, Virginia, USA

Many of my computer generated algorithmic art works are based on visualizations of simulations based on mathematical models of natural processes. Examples include cell morphogenesis, swarm behavior, and diffusion limited aggregation. By controlling various drawing attributes, I try to focus the viewer's attention on the complexity underlying such processes.

Stigmmetry Print #28235
10.5" x 10.5" (unframed)
Digital Print

Stigmergy is a form of self-organization that is brought about by indirect coordination of agents or actions. I consider a model based on stigmergy for simulating the nest formation of ants from the species T. albipennis. The ants collect dispersed grains of sand to form circular nests. My stigmmetry prints are designed by assigning centers, radii, and colors to virtual nests of ants in such a way that a uniform density grid of virtual sand grains self-organizes into a pattern which, up close, has no color symmetry, but from a distance is perceived of as either color preserving or color reversing under various symmetry operations. The pattern for this print was inspired by a crop-circle image I chanced upon, because it required devising an algorithm for solving an elementary problem I had never considered before: Given a finite sequence of radii, how do you construct a sequence of centers so that the resulting circles both lie on a common circle and are succesively tangent.