Vitruvian Paint Machine

Luna and Edo developed the Vitruvian Paint Machine
for Take on me (take me on)
an alternative production factory
17-25 october 2009, in the Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven.

The Vitruvian Paint Machine invites the visitors of the Van Abbemuseum to use Luna and Edo as a vehicle for mural paintings, in accordance with several specific rules. These rules are all based on the proportions of the human body and the interaction with the visitors.

The visitors were asked to influence the painting by choosing one of the four colors: blue, red, green or black. The choosen bucket of paint had to be placed on top of a pillar. Luna and Edo then used the color to execute the according code.

Code to be executed by two painters on two ladders


If you you've been assigned a new color by a visitor, use the new color and its rules. Otherwise continue with your current color. Use the thin brush when there are 3 or less visitors in the room. Otherwise use the thick brush.


Never draw a line into a region which is fully enclosed by other lines. if this makes it impossible to draw, reposition yourself to the nearest non-enclosed region and continue there on the same height. Whenever a line hits a wall corner or doorway, continue around the corner.

BLACK——Draw a straight line of your maximum reach

Start at the end of your last line——The direction should be the same as your last line with a deviation of 10 degrees——When you hit another line, let your line bounce back——The line ends when you can’t reach any further.

RED——Draw a circle

The centre of the circle is the end of your last line——Try to use the largest radius without hitting another color: Start with your shoulder as the centre of rotation, then your elbow, otherwise use your wrist——Complete the circle or stop when both ends hit another line.

BLUE——Draw a parallelogram

From your current location reposition your left- or right foot to an empty step on the ladder——Three corners of the parallelogram are the position of your hip, knee and ankle of your upper leg——Start drawing from your knee——Complete the parallelogram or stop when both ends hit another line.

GREEN——Connect line-ends

Draw a straight line from the centre of your body towards a line-end within reach——When you can’t draw a new line, reposition the centre of your body so that it forms the third corner of a regular triangle with the last drawn line.