4d Hypercube and 5d Penteract

Via YouTube user computerartist:

Computer animated movie of a rotating four-dimensional hypercube, perspectively projected into 3D as stereoscopic left and right images, to be viewed cross-eyed. The computer animation was performed at Bell Labs in the mid 1960s. This is one the first stereoscopic digital computer animations. The image quality became degraded during the process in which the original 16-mm film was digitized.

And a newer version from YouTube user hypercube0:

First nude in the NY Times is new media art

"Young Nude" by Ken Knowlton at Bell Labs, 1967
"Young Nude" by Ken Knowlton at Bell Labs, 1967

Through the kind of ambling the internet is so suited for, I went from Laurie Spiegel’s early computer art experiments at Bell Labs to reading that the first image of a nude in the NY Times was the above image*, created on a computer by Ken Knowlton.  This seems to me to merit a more careful analysis, but my initial thoughts are that:

  1. The first time?  Hard to believe the paper could be that conservative as to not show a painting of a nude before.
  2. We react differently to innovative and flashy technology than we do to traditional craft.

Knowlton tells the story of making the image and then being told by Bell Labs that it could be displayed, but not to associate it with Bell Labs (for fear of it being read as pornography).  When the image ran in the Times, their attitude changed to “You may indeed distribute and display it, but be sure that you let people know that it was produced at Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc.” [ quote from Knowlton’s site ]

It took some serious digging, but I did find the original article, published on Oct 11, 1967.  The citation is below, and can be downloaded from library databases (I found this on ProQuest, the NY Times online only goes back to 1980).

“Art and Science Proclaim Alliance in Avant-Garde Loft”, Henry R Lieberman, New York Times, Oct 11, 1967, p 49.

* This claim is made by Billy Kluver of Bell Labs and founder of E.A.T. – I found several references to this but couldn’t find any sources from the Times that back this up, though I certainly hope it’s true.