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Form + Code, Book Review, by Eduardo Navas

This is a snippet from my review of Form + Code.  You can read the entire text on Vodule.


Form and Code in Design, Art and Architecture, as the book’s cover proposes, is a “guide to computational aesthetics.”  As such it lives up to its promise, which one must accept with the understanding that the authors selected projects that are, in their view, representative of larger movements.

Form + Code, co-authored by Casey Reas, Chandler McWilliams, and Lust, released in the Fall of 2010, gives equal attention to textual as well as visual language.  This could not be accomplished without the careful treatment of image and text as complementary forms of communication.  For this reason it makes sense that Lust, a design studio based in The Hague, is given equal credit as co-author.

In fact, the book’s innovation largely lies on its design, which, at first glance, may appear to be that of a small coffee table publication.  Upon closer examination, however, it becomes evident that Form + Code exudes expertise from practitioners who do not profess to be interested in making theoretical or historical propositions, but instead want to share their knowledge on how to be creative in computing and the arts.  The book’s honesty is its strength.  However, such honesty narrows somewhat the book’s potential to become a definite reference for computational aesthetics.  Before I get to the latter, I must emphasize the former.

Read the complete review at Vodule.

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