Desmond Paul Henry in the Media
The London Science Museum has photographed and catalogued the remains of Henry's Drawing Machine 2
This machine was un-operational and the only machine still in existence.
Henry appears in the exhibition catalogue:
"Coded: Art enters the Computer Age, 1952-1982"LACMA
International and interdisciplinary in scope, Coded examines the origins of what we now call digital art, featuring artists, writers, musicians,
choreographers, and filmmakers working directly with computers as well as those using algorithms and other systems to produce their work.
On Nov 16, 2022, Elaine O'Hanrahan (DP Henry's daughter) was interviewed, together with
Caroline Csuri (Chuck Csuri's daughter) by Alex Estorick and Doug Dodds
in the company of curator Leslie Jones.
Read the interview here:
Our thanks go to Michael Spalter for suggesting this interview.
Watch these two great videos of Henry's pictures, compiled by the Kate Vass Galerie in Zurich:
Generative art and Henry
November 2019 issue of the magazine Artforum included a picture by Desmond Henry.
Crowther, Paul (2018) Digital Art, Aesthetic Creation: the birth of a medium, Routledge, pp.20-35.
Professor Crowther uses a philosophical approach to argue that art created by computers is really art. He dedicates the first chapter of this publication to Desmond Paul Henry. This represents the first in depth evaluation of Henry’s contribution to Computer Art.
“Henry remains a visionary independent who anticipates the ubiquity of technological being in the Postmodernism age.” (Crowther, 2018, p.35)
Elaine O'Hanrahan's article The Contribution of Desmond Paul Henry (1921-2004) to Twentieth Century Computer Art is published in the Art and Technology Journal Leonardo (Volume 51, Issue 2, April 1st 2018 MIT Publication).
June 2017: Serendipity Symposium, Strawberry Hill, London 15/06/2017.
AISB Members Workshop VIII: Serendipity Symposium
This one-day symposium on the theme of ‘serendipity’ was a first attempt to gather the world’s
leading ‘serendiptologists’ in one room. As such, this event brought together researchers in computing, the arts, sciences, and other fields of cultural endeavour. To mark the historic nature of this
occasion the event was held in the Waldegrave Drawing Room at St Mary’s
University, adjacent to Strawberry Hill House, the gothic castle in
Twickenham built by Horace Walpole, who invented the concept of
‘serendipity’ in 1754. A most interesting tour of Strawberry Hill House was included
in the programme.
Elaine O’Hanrahan’s contribution was entitled: The role of chance in the machine-generated art of Computer Art pioneer, Desmond Paul Henry (1921-2004)
In May, Elaine’s manuscript for an article on Henry’s contribution to computer art was accepted by the renowned Art and Technology magazine, Leonardo.
The article will appear in a 2016 issue of the magazine.
O’Hanrahan, Elaine (April 2014), AISB-50 symposium, Goldsmiths, London, delivered a paper entitled: Artistic intuition meets technical ingenuity:
the unique contribution to Digital Art History of 1960’s computer art pioneer, Desmond Paul Henry (1921-2004).
Paul, Gill and Roberts, Andrew, (2014) World War II Love Stories: At a Time of Global Conflict and Upheaval,
the True Stories of 14 Couples Who Found Love, Ivy Press. The amazing story of how Henry met and married his Belgian wife, Louisa Bayen,
following his participation in the Normandy Landings of 1944.
Jones, Daniel, (Feb. 2014), ‘Art and Algorithm’, tankmagazine.com (online).
Feb. 2014: watch Elaine give a talk on her father’s work at the Phoenix, Leicester
May 2013: Permission was granted to Dr. Melissa Langdon (Schools of Arts and Sciences, University of Notre Dame) to publish an image of Henry’s (no. 003, 1962)
in a forthcoming text on globalization and digital art (Springer 2013). The image is used in the context of discussing the emergence of digital art,
and early forms of creative expression.
Owens, Susan (2013) The Art of Drawing: British Masters and Methods since 1600,V & A Publishing, London, p. 185.
Henry picture to be included in an educational book on the Arts for the 9th Grade, by ICONOGRAFIA,
Oxford University Press, Sao Paulo, Brazil. Henry is referred to as a Computer Art Pioneer.
Ricardo, Francisco J. (2013) The Engagement Aesthetic: Experiencing New Media Art through Critique, International Texts in Critical Media Aesthetics,
Bloomsbury Academic, New York, pp.62-63. About the Author: Francisco J. Ricardo, Ph.D., writes about contemporary and new media art theory and criticism.
Affiliated with the University Professors of Boston University, he is co-founder of the Digital Video Research Archive,
and also teaches digital media theory at the Rhode Island School of Design.
Henry at the Victoria & Albert Museum, London: ‘Computer Art: technology and terminology’ [online] Available at: http://www.vam.ac.uk/content/articles/c/technology-and-terminology/ (Accessed: 28/02/2013)
Henry at the Victoria & Albert Museum, London: ‘V&A Search the Collections’ [online] Available at: http://collections.vam.ac.uk/name/henry-desmond-paul/46167/ (Accessed: 28/02/2013)
blincdigital, [exh.] Conwy (Nov. 2012)
Henry cited in: Beck, Paul (2012) Make Amazing Spiral Art, Sterling Innovation, New York, p.19 (Description and image of Henry’s Drawing Machine One).
Henry illustration in: Breward C. and Wood G.( eds.) (2012) British Design from 1948: Innovation in the Modern Age. London: V&A, p.362 (Full-page Henry illustration).
O'Hanrahan, Elaine ( Sept. 2011) ‘Desmond Paul Henry: Computer Art's 'missing link'’, (academic paper) REWIRE, the Fourth International Conference on Media Histories, Science and Technology held at Liverpool John Moore's University Art and Design Academy.
Fraguas, Antonio ‘Y la máquina empuñó el pincel,’ El Pais (07/03/2011)
Grant, Katie ‘Manchester exhibition to commemorate work of ‘Huddersfield’s Picasso’ Desmond Paul Henry’, Huddersfield Examiner (28/02/2011)
Rawsthorn, Alice, ‘When Desmond Paul Henry Traded His Pen for a Machine’ International Herald Tribune/New York Times p.10 (27/02/2011)
Alice Rawsthorn’s strapline reads: “British teacher’s tinkering with computers in ‘60s heralded digital art”.
Henry cited in: Saville, Peter ‘Computer Art Pioneer’, Front Row BBC RADIO 4 (23/02/2011)
Walters, Sarah, ‘ Machine Artist is Finally Honoured’, Metro p.45 (15/02/2011)
Walters, Sarah, ‘Celebrating the City’s Mechanical Picasso’, in ‘City Life Arts’, The Manchester Evening News, p.14 (11/02/2011)
O’Hanrahan, Elaine; O’Hanrahan, Claire (eds.)(Feb. 2011) Desmond Paul Henry: Manchester Pioneer of Computer Art [Exh.Cat.] MOSI. Contributors: Balint Bolygo, Professor Paul Brown, Professor Jagjit Chuhan, Douglas Dodds, Michael Spalter, Dr. Jack Tait, Elaine O’Hanrahan
Henry cited in: Kinetica Art Fair [Exh. Cat.], Kinetica Museum (Feb.2010) p.48 (‘Kinetic Masters’ feature section). Daughter Elaine O’Hanrahan presented a talk on Henry’s career as a Computer Art pioneer.
Henry illustration in: Gemtronic (August 2010) Swarovsky Gems, p.11
Henry cited in: Kinetica Art Fair [Exh. Cat.], Kinetica Museum (Feb.2010) p.48 (‘Kinetic Masters’ feature section)
www.desmondhenry.com was created in 2007 by Aly Sebastien of Redinko
O’Hanrahan, Elaine, (2007) ‘Desmond Paul Henry on Wikipedia
Henry cited in: Levy, David (2006) Robots Unlimited-Life in a Virtual Age, A.K.Peters, Wellesley, U.S.A, pp. 178-180.
O’Hanrahan, Elaine,(2005)‘Drawing Machines’: The Machine Produced Drawings of Dr. D.P. Henry in Relation to Conceptual and Technological Developments in Machine-Generated Art (UK 1960-68) (MPhil thesis, unpublished; John Moores University, Liverpool):
O’Hanrahan, Elaine (2004), ‘Desmond Paul Henry: How World War Two changed one man’s life for the better’, WW2 People’s War,BBC [online]
Henry cited in: Roberts, Emma (2001) ‘Intercultural Drawing Practice: the Art School Response’ in Chuhan, Jagjit (ed.) Responses: intercultural drawing practice, CAIR, LJMU, pp. 40-47.
Henry, D.P (1991) Medieval Mereology, B.R. Grüner Publishing Company.
Henry cited in: Mannings, David (1990), ‘Computer Art’. In David Crystal (ed.) (1990), The Cambridge Encyclopaedia,Cambridge University press, Cambridge, p.289. Here Henry is accorded pioneer status.
Henry, D.P (1984) That Most Subtle Question (Quaestio Subtilissima): The Metaphysical Bearing of Medieval and Contemporary Linguistic Disciplines, Manchester University Press.
Henry, D.P (1977) Teaching and Study companion for use with ‘Philosophy in the Middle Ages’. Hyman and Walsh, Hackett.publications.
Henry, D.P (1974) Commentary on ‘De Grammatico’: The Historical-Logical Dimensions of a Dialogue of St. Anselm’s, Reidel.
Henry, D.P (1972) Medieval Logic and Metaphysics: A Modern Introduction, Hutchinson University Library.
Henry (1969) ’The End or the Beginning?’Solem, (Manchester Students’ Union magazine), pp. 25-27.
Henry illustration in: Databank (summer 1969), (Leasco House Magazine), Ted Hagan, Holland, p.2: Henry picture ‘Conversation’, 1962.
Henry (1968) ‘The Henry Drawing Computer’, Cybernetic Serendipity [Exh. Cat.], Studio International, London, p.50.
Henry, D.P (1967) The Logic of St. Anselm , The Clarendon Press, Oxford. (Reprinted by Gregg Revivals, Aldershot)
Henry (1964) ‘Art and Technology’, Bulletin of The Philosophy of Science Group, Newman Association, no.53.
‘Dr. Henry and his Painting Machine’ The Independent (03/11/64)
Henry, D.P (1964) The ‘De Grammatico’ of St. Anselm: The Theory of Paronymy, Notre Dame University Press.
Henry was interviewed by George Will (Sept. 1963) to be featured in the prestigious American LIFE magazine. The article was scrapped following the assassination of U.S President J. F. Kennedy.
‘Exhibition of Machine-Drawn Pictures’ The Easel (Autumn 1962) p.16-17
‘Computer Does Drawings- Thousands of Lines in each’ The Manchester Guardian (17/09/62)
Frenchman, Michael, ‘The Computer that Draws and Paints’ Time and Tide (13-20/09/62)
The BBC’s first programme in the “North at Six” series (Sept. 1962). Henry was interviewed and demonstrated his first drawing-machine.
Newton, Eric, ‘Ideographs at the Reid Gallery’ The Manchester Guardian (31/08/62).
‘Salford Fashions’ The Daily Telegraph (30/08/62)
‘Pictures by Robot Artist- enter Picasso of Machine Age’ The Manchester Evening News (30/08/62)
‘Doodling at 12 guineas a time’ The Daily Herald (30/08/62)
‘A Robot Draws the Doctor’s Pictures’ The Evening Herald (30/08/62)
Ideographs, [Exh. Cat.] The Reid Gallery, London (Aug-Sept 1962)
Partington, Dave, ‘The Raw Materials of Art’ The Independent (20/10/61)
‘A Philosopher beats 1,000 in art contest’ The Universe, (28/07/1961)
‘A Huddersfield Artist’s Success’The Yorkshire Post (26/07/1961)
‘Lecturer Wins One-Man Show Art Prize’ The Daily Telegraph (07/07/1961)
‘Triumph for a Doodler; London Showing as Art Prize’ The Manchester Guardian (July 1961)
‘Best of 1,000 pictures’ Manchester Evening News (July 1961)
Artists with a North Country Association, [Exh. Cat.] Manchester City Art Gallery (summer 1955)
‘400 students attend art festival in Leeds’ The Yorkshire Post (01/01/1949)
“ Noteworthy is a massive head by D.P. Henry, of Leeds University”
Oliver, W.T ‘Leeds University Art Exhibition: High-spirited works’ The Yorkshire Post (12/05/1948)
“D.P.Henry’s many exhibits show him to be prolific in experiment…….There is evidence of an alert and subtle mind in his best work.’ (Oliver, 1948)
‘University Art: virile exhibition in Leeds’ The Yorkshire Post (06/05/1947)
“But the outstanding contributions are undoubtedly the powerful allegory ‘Megapolitan Golgotha’ and other drawings by Desmond Paul Henry”.