Grid-10 is made up of two shapes: a square and an irregular polygon with mostly acute angles and long spikes.
I wanted to create something with very sharp spikes and to play with the balance of the composition. The large shape expands over the 3 lower-left corners, which anchors it there and allowed me to play with the spikes by limiting their orientation to 90 degrees. I wanted to keep the upper-right corner connected so I extended the longest spike to reach the corner. The spike is relatively thin and sharp, but plays an important role in maintaining the square-shaped boundaries/borders of the piece--it also creates unifying balance between the two contrasting corners and the other area of focus of the piece: the two squares.
The spikes' arrangement creates a feeling of random playfulness, which is only then echoed by the uneven arrangement of the two squares. The squares balance out the spike, so a certain sense of harmony is achieved by all elements. This was one of the rare cases in which I had a somewhat clear idea of what I wanted to accomplish from the start, but even now I see more than what I intended: a fox howling at the moon (first two spikes are the ears, 3rd spike is the muzzle, 4th spike jaw, and 5th spike body).
I created gridz sometime around November 8, 2013, which is Hermann Rorschach's birthday. Rorschach was a psychologist that developed the famous "inkblots test" as a psychoanalysis method. The idea of something so seemingly-simple as an inkblot provoking such deep-rooted thoughts to surface fascinated me.
Another concept behind gridz is Piet Mondrian’s style of abstraction (i.e. Broadway Boogie-Woogie). Mondrian abstracted or “simplified” his compositions to the extent of reducing elements to vertical and horizontal lines and primary colors. Similarly, gridz are highly abstracted and limited which makes creating them a straight-forward and relatively simple process (like inkblots!). Ironically, this abstraction and simplicity are what allow gridz to serve as windows to deeper and more complex ideas. In other words, gridz speak directly and clearly, with minimal interference so that the minds of both creators and viewers can take the spotlight.
Gridz share many similarities with mandalas: spiritual and ritual symbols used in Hinduism and Buddhism for meditation and trance induction. Mandalas are generally square-shaped and use symmetry, repetition, radial balance, and many other elements that are also common in gridz. These stylistic elements in combination with a variety of shapes can make gridz highly meditative, taking both the creator and viewer on a journey of self-discovery through association. This process of meditation and discovery is very personal and can differ greatly between viewer and creator.
Other styles of art using similar elements to gridz are:
Regarding the use of descriptive/creative gridz titles: Initially, before completing the 30 Gridz Series, I had envisioned eliminating the use of creative/descriptive names for gridz and adding this restriction to the list of characteristics listed above. The intention behind this restriciton was to extend the minimalist nature of gridz and prevent any additional influence that the title may cause on the observer. For instance, if I called a grid "Bird", the viewer would immediatly think of a bird before even experiencing the piece. Instead, for the 30 Gridz Series I used a sequence of title names in the follwoing format: "Grid-XX". After completing the 30 Gridz Series and experimentally tagging them with descriptive names, I noticed the pieces were instantly more popular--people liked being guided by the title. I decided to make the use of suggestive titles optional, but in its purest form girdz will have non-descriptive titles.