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This vase is part of series of vases, each generated using a different computational technique: beginning with single dimensional iteration, proceeding through multi-dimensional iteration and then into recursion. The vases are intended to enhance the algorithmic beauty of the flowers they contain. This was as much an editorial process, as a generative one: identifying the characteristics that best represent the algorithm, while still maintaining the form and function of a flower vase. The algorithms each respond to an initial arrangement of flowers and allow for adjustments to the underlying functions, producing almost limitless variation within each vase type. Using rapid-manufacturing processes, a unique user-defined vase could be generated on demand and manufactured within hours.
The Recursive Vase was based on a recursive function, a nesting function that calls itself a number of times, which are frequently used to generate fractals. In this case the function was based on a cracking algorithm that divides a base polygon into smaller triangles and then divides those triangles even further, continuing until a limit was reached. Starting with any planar polygon, the algorithm found the centroid and then created a pyramid from the sides of the base polygon and an point offset from the centroid. A random number of triangular faces from this pyramid were selected and cracked further, creating additional tetrahedrons. The number of levels and degree of randomness could be set prior to running the algorithm.