Oct 30, 2019

Behind the domain: GODS.ART

Hacker-turned-programmer and lover of surrealism Caleb Madrigal explains the story behind GODS.ART domain and website.

Ever looked at a website address and wondered what could possibly be behind it? That’s exactly the story with www.gods.art

Its owner, Caleb Madrigal, is hacker-turned-programmer who writes his own software, “paints” with equations and programming and shares his creations on a website he (obviously) built himself. But what does painting mean in this context? Caleb explains: “Each image or video actually has an accompanying custom-built program just for rendering that work of art. In these programs, I define a number of equations, and the software works similar to a graphing calculator to render these equations into some visual form. In some ways, the computer serves a function similar to that of a telescope in space photography. The mathematical reality is always there but can only be seen through a computer, similar to how a distant nebula is only visible to us humans through the lens of the telescope. The telescope does not create the image of the nebula – it reveals it.

I like the idea of hosting my own content instead of giving the large corporations like Instagram and Facebook more power.

A self-proclaimed lover of surrealism, Caleb used to see it as an escape from reality. However, he now believes that “we are all figments of God’s imagination” and that’s the essential truth. Coming from someone who would feel comfortable chatting to The Big Bang Theory’s Sheldon Cooper, his point of view becomes infinitely more interesting. “I used to believe that God was the Artist and that we are the Art, and that there is this big separation between the Artist and the Art… after all, there must be a difference between the painter and the canvas, right? In some mediums of art, that seems to be the case, but in dreams, the Artist and the Art are One. If a character in one of my dreams says something, it is really me saying it. I believe the same is true in this world: I hear God speak in every person’s voice.”

Several men of science have expressed firm belief in the presence of the divine. The most famous biologist of all time Charles Darwin, for instance, was a firm believer in the Abrahamic God. Caleb’s story of the domain name choice fits nicely with the topic. “While trying to come up with a good domain name, my 6-year-old was looking at one of my pictures and asked me: “Is this part of God’s Art project?”, which is the term he uses to describe mathy-looking things ever since I had shown him a video of the Mandelbrot Set. Caleb had told his son that it was God’s Art since it is defined by mathematics – which, though discovered by humans, is too perfect to have been made by them.

Put a name to your own story, belief or calling with a .ART domain.


Also published on Medium.

Annie Lee
Annie Lee
is a journalist and writer covering a wide range of topics - all the way from art and design to society and travel. You can connect with her on LinkedIn.