Time to think

human brain

I am always surprised about how slow the human brain is. Maybe it’s just me, but I think most humans need quite a bit of time to process input and come up with new ideas. It can take me years to come up with solutions for problems. It takes even longer to process feelings, to really understand how I feel.

I understand how it works for computers, their circuitry is limited. Old computers are slow, new computers should be faster but then the software becomes clunky and you need even faster hardware.

I wonder if our circuitry is limited… maybe our software is a mess… maybe both.

It’s all relative, but if you ask me my brain feels slow.


The Creators Project event in San Francisco this weekend

creators project rafael rozendaal 2012

This weekend all weekend a hackathon art music technology event in San Francisco.
Organized by The Creators Project (Vice Magazine + Intel).

Who would have thought I would be showing work together with David Bowie :)


Resonate Festival

resonate festival

This weekend it is time for the Resonate Festival in Belgrade, Serbia.
I’m excited to speak in a lineup of great artists, designers, musicians and technologists.

See you there!


two keyboard players playing through a mirror

two keyboard players playing through a mirror


“With Editions” @ Dependent art fair NYC

with editions nyc


The intensification of perception

intensification of perception

I remember this art history class many years ago. The professor mentioned that the original meaning of the word “aesthetics” is “the intensification of perception”.

I have never been able to find that quote anywhere. I’m not sure if it really heard it that day or if I imagined it, but it still makes a lot of sense to me.

I always felt an artist should behave like a magnifying glass… absorbing what is around you and bringing it to a focal point. If the focus is sharp enough it can create a fire.


Finding ideas

cutlery rafael rozendaal

I care a lot about finding ideas.
I love the feeling; there is a void, and you think for a while, and there it is, an idea.

I have no idea where ideas come from. I do remember when and where I found most of my ideas. Some came from looking at cartoons, others from being alone, and others from being bored. Some ideas are combinations of many triggers, some are just pure observations. In general I get ideas mostly when I’m alone.

It would be nice to discover a pattern, a method, to find a way to find an amazing amount of amazing ideas. I thought I saw patterns. I noticed I get good ideas when I’m bored. I would go for walks in nature just to be alone for a while and see if ideas would come to me in huge quantities. They didn’t.

I seem to always have ideas for moving images. I wonder if humans have specific talents, if brains are geared in certain directions… Some people have a talent for melodies, and others for stories, and some people have it all.

Where do you find most of your ideas? It would be cool to see patterns, perhaps there are methods to enhance the brain, certain foods or behaviours. Please leave your thoughts in the comments.


open window sketch

open window sketch rafael rozendaal


window sketches

rafael rozendaal window sketch

click on image for larger view


The artwork and it’s description

piero manzoni artists shit

Artworks are usually exhibited with a text next to it.
A small piece of white cardboard with title, artist, year, dimensions, etc.

I’m not sure when it happened but those texts became longer and longer. It has gotten to the point where a lot of artworks have become completely unreadable without the accompanying text. The artwork then functions as a bookcover, an illustration of a verbal idea.

I don’t think there is anything wrong with this in principle. There is a lot of great conceptual art that needs background information to be experienced. I love Piero Manzoni’sArtist’s shit” or Gino de DominicisInvisible cube“.

But overall I think the text next to the artwork has created a lot of boring art. The energy of the work is not inside the work itself, it is in the description text. And the works tend to become too logical and rational because of this habit. These descriptions also prevent the viewer from having a personal first impression. I prefer to see a movie without director’s comments the first time I see it.

Ideally the work is the idea and the idea is the work, they aren’t separated.


another pool sketch

swimming pool sketch rafael rozendaal


Just in time for Valentine’s day: Much Better Than This screensaver

much better than this rafael rozendaal   Much Better Than This screensaver
by Rafaël Rozendaal
for Mac & PC

Price: $ 9.99 / € 7.50


This digital download includes an installer for both Mac & PC.
Payment is easy and secure, you can pay with your Paypal account or credit card, no signup required.

Preview of the screensaver:


rafael rozendaal much better than this screensaver



intestines sketch square

intestines square sketch


Interview by Matthew Stone

rafael rozendaal venice photo by matthew stone

Photo: Matthew Stone for Dazed & Confused Magazine.

Matthew Stone and friends interview Rafaël Rozendaal.
This is an archived version. The original post from November 6, 2009 is here.

Matthew Stone: What do you have faith in?

Rafaël Rozendaal: I think I am a very calculating person. So faith is not something I am concerned with. I look at something’s past and then i try to think what direction that could go to. I don’t think that’s faith. When it’s about me, I don’t know if my fate is decided or if i have a say. I try to spin it for the good. Sometimes my good intentions backfire, but overall I feel blessed. Knowing that things worked out in the past makes it logical to assume that things will work out in the future.

Catherine Borra: Out of all the possible languages (English, Latin, Spanish, visual, sign, irony, empathy, facial expressions, music, archetypes etc.) available on this earth, which one do you feel you express/would express yourself better in, and why?

RR: I have not yet really found something. I’m not very good at expressing myself. My work has nothing to do with expression. And when i talk to people I usually dont do a good job at translating my own feelings to words. I start talking too much and wrong things come out that hit much harder than the right things. Language is a world of its own which has nothing to do with my feelings. Thats hard, because there are a lot of things inside that want to find their way out.

Scottee: Solitary or Collaboration?

RR: I like making the decisions. And I love never having to explain a single anything. That happens when you work alone. Sometimes it is scary being confronted with the boundaries of your own imagination, but still I love working alone.

Susanne Oberbeck: What is your vision for a future society, I mean in terms of political system, families, human relations, architecture, reproduction and so on?

RR: I calculated the following: If we have ultimate communication tools in the future, it does not matter if you are right next to someone or if they are on the other side of the earth. If you divide 6 billion people equally over the earth’s land surface, we are all 160 meters away from our closest neighbor.

Iphgenia Baal: What is the one thing about you that undermines all the opinions you have made above?

RR: Language is a very primitive technology desperately in need of improvement. I feel very limited because of it. Only a few times in my life have I succeeded to feel free from language and that involved a lot of drugs.


A Kurt Vonnegut quote on music

Anybody practicing the fine art of composing music, no matter how cynical or greedy or scared,
still can’t help serving all humanity.
Music makes practically everybody fonder of life than he or she would be without it.

Kurt Vonnegut.

Found on the website of amazing experimental doom jazz band Stinking Lizaveta.