ACM SIGGRAPH, the Association for Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group on Graphics and Interactive Techniques will present its Award for Lifetime Achievement in Digital Art to Charles Csuri for his visionary and creative merging of art and technology.
Through his work, Csuri inspired generations to embrace computer imaging as a serious form of artistic investigation. An artist, computer graphics pioneer and professor emeritus at The Ohio State University, Csuri will receive the award at SIGGRAPH 2011 in Vancouver, BC, August 8.
ACM SIGGRAPH Art Award Chair Cynthia Beth Rubin said Csuri is a true visionary. “Decades ago he embraced the aesthetic potential of early computer imaging, and since then he has unfailingly worked in both teaching and aesthetic production, keeping us growing, discussing, and moving forward.”
Csuri was instrumental in the establishment of Ohio State’s Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design (ACCAD), a leading center on the use and integration of emerging arts technologies, with funding from the National Science Foundation. “Chuck Csuri’s early and unique vision of an interdisciplinary collaborative, creative research center between the arts and sciences continues to permeate our culture,” said Maria Palazzi, director of ACCAD. “All of us who have had the privilege to study and work in this environment are profoundly grateful to Chuck for his vision, persistence and leadership in this field and at Ohio State. He has impacted the lives of generations of students who are now top professionals in graphics and animation throughout the world.”
Csuri began his work in intertwining of art and computer science in the 1960s. He experimented with computer animation, winning awards and acclaim throughout Europe and the United States. As a painter, Csuri was immersed in the passionate discussions of his time, when abstract expressionists challenged everything from the purpose of art to the functions of abstract compositional elements. Through his personal network of colleagues, he was also aware of parallel discourses among scientists who debated the role of computers in society. His profound understanding of these two cultures put him in a unique position to merge aesthetics and computing, long before either group recognized the potential synergies.
With support from NSF, the US Navy and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Csuri directed research on computer graphics for over 22 years. The results of these studies have been applied to flight simulators, computer-aided design, architecture, magnetic resonance imaging, visualization of scientific phenomena and special effects for TV and film.
Csuri’s work is included in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Zagreb Museum of Contemporary Art, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the ZKM Center for Art and Media, and other important collections. He received B.F.A. and M.A. degrees from Ohio State.