Art inspired by Cellular Automata

Eleonora Bilotta (a), Marcella Lorenzi (a), Pietro Pantano (b)

(a) Linguistics Department, University of Calabria, Italy
(b) Mathematics Department, University of Calabria, Italy

The aim of this presentation is to show to the public of NKS community what the Evolutionary Systems Group (ESG) has realized in visual art and music using Cellular Automata. Starting from the idea that Cellular Automata can be translated into music, we produced music using different musification codes. We mean for musification the process of translation of mathematical systems into music (Bilotta et al, 2000; 2002), and for code the specific software programme we implemented for this purpose. In the presentation, various musical compositions will be performed while a repository of this music is available at the .Art galleries. section of the following web site: The music has been obtained using one-dimensional and two-dimensional Cellular Automata. Our aim was to understand emergence and complexity in Cellular Automata using some other cognitive tools, like music. On the visual arts side, we realized galleries of patterns generated by evolution of one-dimensional and two-dimensional Cellular Automata, self-reproducers 3D images, artificial worlds and animals created starting from two-dimensional Cellular Automata. Furthermore the group realized some sculptural objects inspired by Cellular Automata. Many examples of these artefacts will be presented in the talk as well. Art and music might be useful for reading complexity in Cellular Automata, following the NKS approach.


Bilotta E., Pantano P. e Talarico V. (2000), Synthetic Harmonies: an approach to musical semiosis by means of Cellular Automata, Proceedings of Artificial Life VII, Alife VII, Portland, Oregon, USA, MIT Press.

Bilotta E. and P. Pantano (2002) Synthetic Harmonies: Recent results. LEONARDO Volume 35, Issue 2 (April 2002), pp.35-42, MIT Press.

Program Outline
Photo Scrapbook

NKS 2007
NKS 2006
NKS 2003