Gestaltungsmaschine: Art meets Artificial Intelligence and Sustainability

Gestaltungsmaschine: Art meets Artificial Intelligence and Sustainability

Berlin-based artists present projects at the intersection of Art and Artificial Intelligence at the UN conference AI for Good

Geneva, Tuesday, 28. - Friday, 31. May 2019

© Artificial Affinity, "BVG Motte" by Sascha Pohflepp, Casper Boehme, Jens Dobberthin, Joy Belgassem, ANNEKE VON HOLST, Frederike Kintscher, Yun Kuo, Felix Rasehorn und Adam Ferriss

© Artificial Affinity, "BVG Motte" by Sascha Pohflepp, Casper Boehme, Jens Dobberthin, Joy Belgassem, ANNEKE VON HOLST, Frederike Kintscher, Yun Kuo, Felix Rasehorn und Adam Ferriss

How can artificial intelligence (AI) accelerate our progress towards sustainable development and the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals? This question will be addressed for the third time by representatives of the United Nations and the world of AI at the AI for Good Global Summit, the leading United Nations platform for dialogue on sustainable AI development, from 28-31 May 2019. For the first time as part of the conference: an art program with an exhibition, organized by the Berlin science and art initiative STATE, which is the official program partner of the summit organized by the UN Information Technology Unit (ITU) and XPRIZE Foundation. As a highlight of the exhibition, STATE will present the art exhibition Gestaltungsmaschine in cooperation with Kompetenzzentrum Kultur- und Kreativwirtschaft des Bundes with selected works of the AI Innovation Camp, which was jointly organized in March 2019 and tested the potentials and possibilities of actors of the culture and creative industries in the field of AI.

Artistic expression has always been a trigger for social change, especially when it is accelerated by new technologies. "Artists see the impact of technology decades before it happens, but nobody pays attention to them", Marshall McLuhan already described this "visionary" ability and speculative far-sightedness of artists in the discourse field of technical innovations.

The art exhibition Gestaltungsmaschine as part of the "AI for Good" Global Summit is dedicated to this key technology of the 21st century from an artistic perspective: it reflects on AI and its potential to expand human creativity and asks about the role of the artist in the development of AI.

The exhibition presents UNFINISHED, a creative dialogue between the painter Roman Lipski and an AI developed by the Berlin AI agency Birds on Mars, and Christian "Mio" Loclair's work Narciss - an installation that analyzes itself using an AI algorithm. Works by media artist Sascha Pohflepp and his team are also on display: Created in collaboration with the Museum of Natural History in Berlin, they focus on the future of evolution and biodiversity in the age of AI.

The aim of the exhibition is to expand the otherwise highly technological debate on the possibilities and limits of AI to include application-oriented cultural and social perspectives. In addition, it should be emphasized that the development of a technology that transforms our society in this way requires artistic reflection and appropriation in order to exploit the potential of AI and use it in a meaningful way. The exhibited works provide food for thought and show an important part of the current debate.

The presented works were created or presented within the framework of the Gestaltungsmaschine Innovation Camp, an interdisciplinary workshop program of the Kompetenzzentrum Kultur- und Kreativwirtschaft des Bundes sponsored by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Berlin Science Gallery STATE Studio. From 28 to 30 March 2019, invited experts from the cultural industry and AI tested the potential of the key technology within the framework of the Gestaltungsmaschine workshops on the basis of real application cases in culture, business and society. In Geneva, some of the projects and work developed there will now be presented to leading decision-makers and the general public on the international stage.

More than 80 invited participants worked out exemplary approaches at 11 workshop stations of innovative initiatives in the border area between culture and AI, which impressively demonstrated the potentials of cultural and creative workers in the AI field. Whether as mediators between innovation drivers and the public, as users of AI technologies in the creative, artistic and cultural fields or as active players in experimenting with AI in new fields of application, the AI Innovation Camp was able to demonstrate that an important role plays in the development of key technology and in the definition of its fields of application.

Participating artists:

Reeps One is an award-winning composer, artist and beatboxer who experiments with the human voice and digital technology. He uses machine learning as a development medium for his work. At the "AI for Good" conference, Reeps One will take the audience into his world of ideas - together with an AI he will create a speculative future of voice and music during the Performance Night.

Christian “Mio” Loclair, Creative Director at Waltz Binaire, is a media designer, coder and choreographer from Berlin. In his works he investigates the boundaries between the natural and digital world and transforms them into philosophical narratives. Using the latest technology, Loclair creates interactive installations, audio-visual spaces of experience, visual narratives and performances that illuminate the beauty and drama of human existence. At "AI for Good" Loclair presents Narciss a work in which an AI analyzes its physical appearance and begins to think about itself.

Roman Lipski is a painter living in Berlin. His works have been shown in internationally renowned museums such as the Nagoya/Boston Museum of Fine Arts in Japan and the National Art Museum of China. They are represented in collections such as the Alex Katz Foundation in New York and the collection of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. In his current project Unfinished, Roman Lipski, in collaboration with YQP & the Berlin-based AI company Birds on Mars, is developing the first artificially intelligent muse that analyzes and deconstructs Lipski's images and assembles them into something new.

Sascha Pohflepp & Team

Sascha Pohflepp is an artist and design researcher whose interdisciplinary work touches on topics such as synthetic biology, AI, geopolitics and space travel. At "AI for Good", Pohflepp will present Artificial Affinity, a speculation on the future of evolution in the Anthropocene. Created as part of the Innovationscamp and in collaboration with the Museum of Natural History in Berlin as well as Casper Boehme, Jens Dobberthin, Joy Belgassem, Anneke von Holst, Frederike Kintscher, Yun Kuo and Felix Rasehorn. Artificial Affinity asks how AI could influence and direct the adaptation strategies of species.

About the hosts

UN Conference "AI for Good"

The AI for Good Conference is the leading UN platform for global and inclusive dialogue on AI. The annual conference in Geneva is hosted by the ITU in cooperation with the UN sister agencies XPRIZE Foundation and ACM. The aim of the conference is to bring together innovation drivers in the field of Artificial Intelligence and to develop concrete applications for various problem areas.

STATE Studio

STATE is a Berlin-based initiative that since 2014 has brought society and research together in a new way: participative, interdisciplinary and inspiring.

STATE Studio is a public gallery, showroom and event space in central Berlin. It’s a place for creative synergies between science, art, and innovation to discover and explore the breakthrough developments that shape our future.

Through its exhibition laboratory and open program, it offers curated deep-dives into current trends in cutting-edge research and innovation. Experience thought-inspiring works from emerging artists and designers, discover early prototypes from international research labs and meet inspiring researchers, creatives, and entrepreneurs. Realized in partnership with Wissenschaft im Dialog, the initiative for science communication in Germany, and is supported by Johanenlies.

Kompetenzzentrum Kultur- und Kreativwirtschaft des Bundes

The task of the Kompetenzzentrum Kultur- und Kreativwirtschaft des Bundes (KKW) is to make the cultural and creative industries visible, to communicate their interdisciplinary potential for business, society and politics and to develop solutions for challenges relevant to the sector together with the stakeholders. The aim is to identify developments at an early stage, to increase the dynamics of innovation, particularly in the area of non-technical innovation, and, together with the network, to identify possible solutions to present and future challenges.

Important for this are internal and cross-industry networking and the conception and implementation of cross-border cooperations and extraordinary event formats. The KKW ensures the transfer and classification of the knowledge gained and points out ways in which small and micro enterprises in particular can benefit from them. Another focus is the scientific debate on the development of the cultural and creative industries - nationally and internationally. Current contents will be taken up and further developed. Based on this competence profile, a sharpened overarching federal perspective is created, which positions the Kompetenzzentrum Kultur- und Kreativwirtschaft des Bundes  as an international pioneer in analysis and practice and nationwide initiator of impulses within the framework of its project mandate for the Initiative Kultur- und Kreativwirtschaft of the german Federal Government.