Programmed: Rules, Codes, and Choreographies in Art, 1965–2018

Solo en Inglès

“The hope was for me as an artist to lose control, and to have my control exist at the level of setting up the experiment.” —Ian Cheng

Hear directly from artists and curators on selected works from Programmed: Rules, Codes, and Choreographies in Art, 1965–2018.

Casey Reas, {Software} Structures #003 A and B, 2004

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Narrator: Casey Reas made these two works while thinking about the relationship between Software art and Conceptual art. He took his cues especially from the wall drawings of Sol LeWitt, one of which has been drawn nearby.

Casey Reas: I was looking really closely at LeWitt's work, specifically at the wall drawings, because of their text instructions as the origin for the drawings that then are executed on the wall. Structure 1 and Structure 2 were working my way up to define a way of using human languages for creating software instead of using coding languages—using plain English to make the process of the software very clear. Structures 3A and 3B were a breakthrough in the sense of being able to encode a visual system in language that is then executed in software to create an image, either on a screen or projected.  

Writing them in English was really important for me for two reasons. One, it allowed the audience to see what the process was, to see the system and have access to it. And it also allowed me to remain in more of a loose and ambiguous space before then doing the final encoding in a computer programming language.

White computer generated forms on a black background.

Narrator: Casey Reas made these two works while thinking about the relationship between Software art and Conceptual art. He took his cues especially from the wall drawings of Sol LeWitt, one of which has been drawn nearby.

Casey Reas: I was looking really closely at LeWitt's work, specifically at the wall drawings, because of their text instructions as the origin for the drawings that then are executed on the wall. Structure 1 and Structure 2 were working my way up to define a way of using human languages for creating software instead of using coding languages—using plain English to make the process of the software very clear. Structures 3A and 3B were a breakthrough in the sense of being able to encode a visual system in language that is then executed in software to create an image, either on a screen or projected.  

Writing them in English was really important for me for two reasons. One, it allowed the audience to see what the process was, to see the system and have access to it. And it also allowed me to remain in more of a loose and ambiguous space before then doing the final encoding in a computer programming language.


Casey Reas, {Software} Structure #003 B, 2004 and 2016. JavaScript. Commissioned by the Whitney Museum of American Art for its artport website