Jean-Philippe Côté is an artist based in Montreal (Québec, Canada). His visual and interactive work is always driven by algorithms. Using open source software and pieces of “obsolete” hardware, he puts together interactive installations that bring back a sense of tangibility to this otherwise artificial, virtual and augmented world of ours.
Jean-Philippe leverages his early years as an award-winning developer to devise algorithmic approaches to creating art and re-shaping reality. This makes him a respected contributor to the open source community, especially in the fields of creative coding and physical computing.
His subject of choice is the human face which he usually draws using micro or macro line segments. While figurative, his work challenges perception. The viewer’s brain is asked to fill in the gaps and one often needs to change his point of view to fully appreciate the work.
Going back to school to complete a master’s degree (2009-2013) is probably what brought him to visual arts. His research work yielded an interactive platform for non-musicians to play music together called Mmm. Mmm was presented publicly during the Sennheiser Sound Creation and New Media Concert (2013) and during ChaosMédia (2013). A mobile spin-off platform, named MMMM, was also developed via public funding. While these projects were relatively short-lived, they did demonstrate how powerful software as a prosthetic could be.
It did not take long before Jean-Philippe realized he could apply this same approach to visual arts. Having, himself, no formal training in drawing, he could use his programming skills to devise software and hardware contraptions that would help him create visual art. This has been is approach ever since.
His first algorithmically-generated pieces have been displayed at Société des arts technologiques (SAT) during the Générations d’idées symposium. He was then invited to speak about his process during various local events.
The momentum brought on by these early public presentations allowed him to present Yöti – The Algorithmic Portrait Artist at various festivals and events:
- FITC (Toronto)
- Composite #10 (Montreal)
- Eyeo (Minneapolis)
Jean-Philippe teaches in the Multimedia Department of Collège Edouard-Montpetit. He holds a master’s degree in communication (with a specialization in experimental media) from Université du Québec à Montréal.