Ruth Leavitt * 1944

Ruth Leavitt's introduction to computers was via her husband Jay, though her own background was grounded in abstract expressionism - 'dripping paint, house paintbrushes, and the attitude "I don't know anything,"' as she puts it. The transition to using the computer involved, as for most of the pioneering artists, writing or commissioning programmes

to realise a specific artistic intent. In her own case both variation and distortion were important tools in her computer art work, giving rise to a dynamic that encompassed both constructivist purity and more lyrical tensions. Ruth Leavitt was the editor of one of the earliest compilations on computer art (Artist and Computer, Harmony Press, 1976)