Regular Irregularity (R.I.)


Session Title:

  • Between Art and Science 1

Presentation Title:

  • Regular Irregularity (R.I.)




  • This interdisciplinary research mathematically analyzes an old philosophical idea: the idea that every event is necessitated by antecedent events and conditions somehow governed by the laws of nature. The research searches for mathematically elegant equations describing the paring between cause and effect, particularly when the laws of nature seem random and unpredictable. Based on the research, our art practice creates linkage between the scientific description of randomness and its reflection in contemporary culture. It seeks to inquire the relationship between perceived virtual experiences in science and the lived experience of accepting a certain degree of chaos in our daily routine. It also blurs the border between scientific nature and its physical appearance.

    This research is titled Regular Irregularity (R.I.).Irregularity refers to an apparently complex random system, and Regular refers to a simple equation describing the system. Iteration method, a mathematical operation that repeatedly feeds the result of an equation back into the equation itself, is commonly used in the study of a random system. R.I. utilizes the iteration method to model a random system’s sequential behavior, which exhibits extreme sensitivity to the input values. R.I. excavates further by developing fitting techniques suitable for predicting future events in a random system.

    Projects under investigation using R.I. theory are carried out under the name of Doodle Lab, These projects include, Random Marking which examines the resemblance between lines generated by mathematical iteration method and by random mark making; Baby NuNa transforms sound collected near a nuclear power plant into visual patterns forming a visually chaotic representation of public perception depicting controversy associated with nuclear power plants; GPS doodling geographically maps an individual’s daily movement, compares the movement patterns made by different individuals; and Beijing 2008 converts Chinese calligraphy into corresponding sound and graphic patterns using R.I. theory.