You don't need MS/DOS to chisel a chunk of marble, but to be an avant-garde sculptor these days, it helps to know something about computers. From June 3 to June 7, some 41 sculptors from the U.S., Canada, Japan, and Britain are set to meet at Philadelphia's University of the Arts for what may be the biggest assemblage ever of sculptors who use computers in their work. It's strictly art for art's sake. Still, some of the sculptors are stretching their software in ways that could have commercial spin-offs, says Rob Fisher, a Bellefonte (Pa.) sculptor who is co-chairing the event.
Fisher's own work involves designing weirdly irregular crystalline structures with one computer program and then using another program to test whether they could stand on their own if built from steel tubes. He says the technique might inspire unconventional architectural designs. Other sculptors are using computers in works that interact with passersby. That's of possible interest to people who invent games and advertising displays.