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"Mona Lisa 1. 618"
Picture as the warning.

An essay inspired by picture of NEObell, by writer
and doctor of philosophy
Sergei Kluchnicov.

 

         The Black Square, or the square of canvas, dressed in a simple frame, speaking more precisely.
But it is not the Malevich’s Black Square, since it is covered with thick ligature of letters and numbers. A painting-cryptogram, which is needed to be revealed. Art historians and critics would try to appraise this unusual painting as an object of the art which uses letters.

From a distance these fancy numbers appear like some ancient writings, runic symbols, sacred symbols ligature, but after you take a closer look, you are starting to feel a disappointment because of your spontaneous assumption. It is a pure technocracy, a computer language, a kind of the code, which is concealing information, right now before you.The invisible side of any web page looks pretty similar to this painting – long rows of numbers, English letters, different and strange symbols. But suddenly, in a moment when your interest is almost lost, you begin to have feelings that some force is attracting your attention back to this canvas. The interest of a researcher appears deep inside in your mind, a desire to unravel, to know why the artist wrote out all those numbers and letters so professionally and carefully, and why the artist created that strange and unknown code. After all, it is the natural thirst of humans to open the secrets and to find the essence of things, whatever it is – a genetic code or ancient writings.

But when you get know what is shown on the canvas, you realize that it is the technocratic phenomenon, and its frightening magnetism becomes clearer. You start to guess, that perhaps, the hidden power of a real image, which reflection is encoded in these signs, is attracting our attention, enforcing us to examine a black rectangle again and again. Still, there is a connection between the reality and the sign of this reality, even if this sign does not express no reality, and this sign is not an analog.

But then, you, as a person who likes the classic art, are beginning to feel some kind of rebellion. Because it is the Mona Lisa, La Giaconda – it is what we are speaking about, whose mysterious smile is the secret for many centuries for the great thinkers of humanity, for artists, for historians and for all fans of the beauty. How could it happen that the artist touched this beauty and tried to check the harmony by the algebra, to divide the complete image into rows of not-related numbers and signs?! After all, such deconstruction ruins all the unique integrity, which we love most of all in the quiet museums or in our own life.

But when you are starting to think more about the phenomenon of this painting, you are realizing that the all is not simple at all. The artist did nоt try to trivialize the perfection, did nоt draw devil horns to the amazing female form, did not try to pin a brush to the tail of a donkey in attempt to make something new by forcing animal to make a painting. She also did nоt make only a high quality printing copy of the Mona Lisa using a strange way of reproduction. She just reproduced with her own hands a real computer code of artist’s canvas, with all the respect of the original painting, with the good faith and in a professional manner. It would be also interesting to ask the artist, what were her feelings while she was drawing all these numbers and letters? If there was a kind of mysticism, because she had to deal with the brilliant mystery of the most mysterious artist on the earth?

There is also a question about the artist’s creative motivation. Let's say that the artist has shown herself as an excellent copyist. But why she did not made a copy of the picture, instead of its digital underside, which is millions of times less beauty that the original, especially when this artist can make realistic canvases? Maybe the artist was guided by Islamic aesthetics, according to which it is impossible to portray the human face? Maybe she wanted to scare us with the cold energy of computer through the looking glass? Or maybe she was able to look to the future, without knowing it, and she conveyed her spirit wishing us not to lose beauty, but fight for it?

We do not know her motivation, but on the other hand, we know, that in art, idea and its implementation are guided by intuition, and sometimes the artist herself doesn’t know, why and what for she created something, in this innovating way, whose sense is not understood by all other people. I would venture to suppose that no matter what the artist was thinking about, starting her hard work, she has painted a painting-warning.

It warns us of a completely new reality, which is very near, and prevents us about it from an unexpected quarter. Today, we can hear a lot of talks about computer era, which is approaching to us. We are portend, heralded, that very soon, computers they will be looking at us from all the walls, and even guide every our step, which we have to make. Rapprochement and interpenetration of computer systems and human is already real. Computers have the basis of a liquid crystal and, thus become more humanized, and the person to whom will soon connect a variety of microchips more likened to a computer. Moreover, not only psychologically but also really. And not only psychologically, but even biologically. Futurists foresee the emergence of uncontrolled robots, and science fiction writers paint a colorful picture of the uprising machines and enslaving people by sinister cyborgs, which soon to be superior to the people of his intellectual power in all respects. The mystics claim that by crossing artificially created by people with real people in the end lost Atlantis. The mystics are claiming that crossing artificial intellect and real humans was the real reason why ancient civilization called Atlantis was destroyed.

But all who are involved in such discussions agree on the fact, that no matter how hard we would try to bring together these two realities, their mind languages are different: the human nervous system uses analog way to construct mental reality, as it known, there is a whole line in neurophysiology and neuropsychology, dedicated to research work about pattern recognition of images. And computer and computer network is working on a digital basis. Humans and computers have misunderstandings at all, and the creation of a computer is still very poorly understood his creator-man.

Especially because if the Creator made man in his image and likeness, and gave him the key in form of religious and spiritual practices just to understand, and the people in the mass use this key without much success, then the computer don’t have any keys, which can be used to understand humans. Except that he can only remember the smell of his master. What will be the result of this attempt to mix these two realities nobody knows, but experts like the author of the theory of the Big Bang Stephen Hawking talking about extermination of all human race, and its replacement by some kind of post humanity in electronic networks. And do we like it? I can imagine that there are some of us, who will find this perspective very amusement, because they believe that, as it was promised, there will be the smartest electronic servants, who will be able to do all the routine works, and even be a friend to his master, just to make him feel happy and not alone. And some just don’t believe in such perspectives, and think that it would go further on its own way.

But research and the rapid development of the computer world tells us, that most likely "online" is not just alive and well, but that soon there will be no area of life (corner of being) where digital world wouldn’t put its electronic tentacles. The same is said to us by the canvas by NEObell has managed to see through the world wide web the way how do the computers perceive us, humans, and how would they (computers) see our human appearance and the beauty, and the genius. Strictly speaking, we have been peeking for a while into to digital looking glass already, and even created a film about it (do you remember the same movie about Terminator). Here, there is the idea and the plan which are interesting in their own. Yet no one has offered us to take a look at the Mona Lisa, through the eyes of a computer. This picture is, of course, is not inspiring as any disintegration of human integrity. How will we communicate with each other? How will they understand us? The painting by Leonardo da Vinci, would it not be destroyed by the guarding robot, if he sees it as a set of numbers and if there will be a malfunction in his personal software?

But what shall we do? Shall we refuse the progress and go into the peasant’s house with torches? How to avoid the deadlock when we are already approaching the point of no return? NEObell made the attempt to understand the world of computers, to read its language as a text and the message written for us. There are different ways to appreciate the style, in which this painting is made, and the talent, with which it is made. I am convinced that there will be the passionate fans of this style and approach, who will declare this style as a genius one, the style which automatically abolishes any realism and even a drawing itself. I see this picture as a sample of an original genre that allows you to see the other side of computer reality and warns us of the approaching of a new era of the dictatorship of the numbers, and the kingdom of quantity. The Black Rectangle by NEObell tells us about the way of our smaller technocratic brothers, speaking more precisely our creations, see us and the best examples of our creative genius. Will they understand us when they gain strength on the planet? What if they will decide to exterminate us or convert us to digital format, exercising a disastrous program, like it was said in an ancient legend of Belshazzar through the mysterious inscription: “numbered, weighed, divided”, which suddenly appeared on the wall during Belshazzar's feast in a day before he was murdered. After all, it is true, that we ourselves become more digitized, and we ourselves become subjective to the realm of numerics. So, what shall we finally do?

However, according to the laws of the genre, exit of the maze, is there, where is the entrance. Maybe the answer to The Da Vinci Code (in its digital form) can be found reading the title picture? Why did the artist named her work by the famous number 1, 618, which symbolizes the harmony? Wikipedia defines this number as the "golden ratio" and gives him the following definition:
"It is proportional to the length of the division into unequal parts, in which the entire segment as applies to most, as she refers to most of the smaller, or in other words, a smaller segment of attitude toward greater as more of that." In other words, it is the proportion of the measure and beauty. The first book dedicated to the phenomenon of the golden section was written by a mathematician, a founder of the descriptive geometry and a friend of Leonardo da Vinci, Luca Pacioli. The first man among the artists who started practicing image of a human body on the proportions of divine harmony, has been known as Leonardo da Vinci. When writing the Mona Lisa he used "gold isosceles triangle", in which the ratio of the thigh to the base is equal to the golden section. He also gave to the world this phrase (collocation) - "golden section"..Following this tradition of Leonardo to the image of the body pulled Albert Durer and other masters of the brush. The human perception of beauty certainly was influenced by that special vision of order and harmony of world and nature. And of course this order is associated with the proportions of the "golden section". Years later, scientists have discovered the presence of the principle of the "golden section" in the structure of the world down to the structure of the atom and wildlife. And as we know, all the digital technique is based on that principle. Experts believe, that in the future, many principles of mathematics will be revised, and there will be new coding principles, based on the use of the "golden section". And of course, programming and computer engineering will be involved to this process. Today, the mass production of analog microprocessors for digital signal processing is already launched.

What does this mean for our understanding of the picture? Divine proportion, here is the code by which seemingly dead columns of letters and numbers on the screen turn into a beautiful image of a mysterious and beautiful woman. If we keep this measure in its internal perception and equip computers as much as possible with a strong function of the analog recognition of beauty and proportions, may be, they will begin to understand our human world is a little better than today, and they will transform into the intelligent machines, which will be the ones, that will helps us more consciously? We have already said, that the code is the mystery, which is needed to be revealed and understood. The man himself is there by divine code of nature, encrypted in the DNA-RNA helices. Today we are approaching to its unraveling. Let's try to break the code of the future, but whatever it is, no matter what it is, we will try to bring the principle of harmony into it. (Let's try to break the code of the future, but whatever it was, we will make adjustments as the principle of harmony). That is a kind of reflections, inspired by NEObell s unusual black rectangle.