Xerox Parc, 2017
30″ x 24″, dye sublimation on aluminium

This painting was created, using an iPad Pro, Apple Pencil and Procreate app, from direct observation of the Xerox company’s Palo Alto Research Center, now known as PARC, a Xerox company,, a “blue sky thinking” crucible for innovation and new ideas. PARC played a vital role in the development of the personal computer, especially with regard to the graphical user interface and mouse, both originating with Doug Engelbart (see the SRI painting in this series) and his Augmentation Research Center, from which PARC drew a number of employees. PARC’s technology and their Alto computer served as inspiration to Steve Jobs for what became the Macintosh computer (there is much written about this subject – Walter Isaacson’s book “The Innovators” gives a very lucid summary of the evolution of the digital age, including the role of PARC and key PARC staff like Alan Kay).

It was a little like a time warp walking back into PARC. In the late ‘80s / early ‘90s, I used to visit as a representative of Oxford Instruments selling superconducting magnets and cryogenic research equipment. Definitely a case of déjà vu! 🙂

This time-lapse replay video shares the creative process, brush stroke by brush stroke. See all the elements that went into the background…

This painting is part of my Iconic Places of Silicon Valley series of plein air iPad paintings:
The Hewlett Packard Garage, Palo Alto (1939)

SRI International, Menlo Park (1946)

Intel, Santa Clara (1968)

Xerox PARC, Palo Alto (1970)

Apple Park, “The Spaceship”, Cupertino (1976)

Google Bikes, “Googleplex”, Mountain View (1998)

Facebook Thumbs Up Sign, Menlo Park (2004)

Twitter, San Francisco (2006)

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