Precious Random

  • Precious Random
    Light bulb blinking with the purest randomness
    Antoine Schmitt 2013

    Bulb design : Hervé Isle de Beauchaine
    created within the exhibition “Made in Light”
    organized by the Musée en Herbe (Paris)
    with the support of the Fondation Vasarely (Aix en Provence)

    Precious Random answers the proposal of the Musée en Herbe to create an artwork starting from one of the giant light bulbs signed by Hervé Isle de Beauchaine, with a light bulb that lights on and off according to a totally random rhythm. This randomness is generated by an electronic apparatus included in the sculpture and tending toward the purest randomness.

    Pure randomness is very difficult to create and nevertheless it is at the basis of al modern computer science, from cryptography to information theory. Randomness that is not pure presents shapes, recurrences, patterns, imbalances, which weakens it and make it predictable. ANd unpredictability is fundamental to guarantee the best quality of communication and the best security. This pure randomness is precious. Precious Random pays homage to it and transforms it into a radical artwork.

    The unpredictable lighting up plays of course with the popular symbolics of of the light bulb that lights up to announce the event of an unexpected idea. Also, the white dot that lights on and off refers both to the white square on white background of Kasimir Malevith and to the bit of Claude SHannon, minimal unit of information that can be 0 or 1. The absolute unpredictability also raises fundamental metaphysical questions dealing with randomness and necessity, with the divine, with free will, which makes it mysterious and almost disquieting.

    Site of Hervé Isle de Beauchaine