Algorithmic Art: The Sign Painting Project by Francis Alÿs

Artist's collaboration with Mexican sign painters challenges the idea of paintings as unique works.

Sign shop/artist studio with man at work, and signs and paintings on the walls and floor.
Juan García at work on the 'Set Theory' series. Photo: Francis Alÿs.

Last year, Francis Alÿs (@francis_alys_official) was awarded the prestigious Wolfgang Hahn Prize, and the corresponding exhibition of his work is showing at Köln's Mu­se­um Lud­wig until 7 April.

The focus of the show is Alÿs' Sign Painting Project from the 1990s, produced in collaboration with three sign painters in Mexico City. It was inspired by the city's hand-painted street advertisements, and the illustrations that adorned them.