Last December I was invited to speak about artificial intelligence and art at an international conference in Indonesia called Meminds 2019
It was a meeting of the minds type of conference and a financial one at that! I was in brilliant company – Government Heads, key people from the World Bank, specialists in A.I, youth leaders, technologists, scientists…and then there was me, the artist! It was completely out of my realm and it was great!
I had an amazing time. I exchanged ideas about art and technology, I learned about their specialities, concerns about the future from a financial perspective and learned about sustainable commerce. It was truly an experience. And throughout it all, I never ran out of things to talk about with these super intelligent people. Everyone was genuinely curious about what I did. “You’re an artist!!”, they exclaimed with a sparkly in their eye! Some even confessed of their former life as an artist or painter!
The conference took place over 2-days and my panel was the last one on the second day when everyone was just about DONE and ready to go home from all the heavy presentations! So I made sure my talk was short and visual. My topic was “What Science Can Do -An Artist’s Perspective” and I am so happy to say that it was very well received especially from the younger audience.
I think it was my last note to them where I said something like I’m an artist and I have no real business being here. My journey there started with me saying yes to an A.I art collaboration project with #womentechmakers in May 2019, which later led me to be invited to share my thoughts about it at an asian tech conference #nextBigTechAsia in Sept 2019 which led me to the Meminds conference in Dec! It’s all about being open and keeping your options open because you never know where it will lead you.
This was later a note I shared post conference with my collaborators #WomenTechMakers KL x Google who were excited to be mentioned in Jakarta!
I am so happy that I said YES to working on this project. Not only did I get to learn so much about style transfer, for some reason the project became a gateway for me as I was invited to speak about my experience at two very different conferences this year! The first one was at Tech Asia 2019 where I was able to discuss (with confidence) with scientists and data experts over the question of will robots be taking over. The second conference was in Indonesia called Meminds 2019 and I was asked to share my thoughts to a group of scientists, financial experts & students of what A.I meant to me as an artist. On both occasions it was without doubt that while the technology is exciting, humans are still important in the art of creating and we are needed to add nuance, emotion and complexities into the artwork. So while programmers can say “talent is teachable” (and that came out quite a bit in the tech conference), human consciousness is not and that really is the key separation between art-ificial and art. I am excited however to see how things develop as more artists continue to explore A.I in a deeper, more purposeful way. I think now, more than ever, we artists have a responsibility to out on our scientific hats and play a creator’s role to develop and navigate the future of ART and AI.
To being OPEN for more!
Lots of love!