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  • Writer's pictureDimitri Ozerkov

Artificial Intelligence and Intercultural Dialogue

When: 07.06.2019 - 07.07.2019

Where: the General Staff Building


On June 7 2019 the exhibition “Artificial Intelligence and Intercultural Dialogue” dedicated to the creative capabilities of Artificial Intelligence (AI) will be open at the General Staff Building.

The exhibition is organized by The State Hermitage Museum and The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), Russia’s sovereign wealth fund, within The Hermitage 20/21 project. It will be launched during this year’s St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) and will be a part of the forum’s cultural program. Fourteen artists and creative teams from ten different countries are taking part in the exhibition.

AI technology is used to process large bulks of data, including images. In the last few years, the use of AI has helped to achieve revolutionary results in cybersecurity, banking and marketing due to the facial recognition technology.

AI-based contemporary art has received global recognition after the sale of the Portrait of Edmond Belamy created by the French art group Obvious, at Christie’s auction on 25 October 2018 for $432,500.

To create the painting the artists and computer programmers from Obvious used generative-adversarial network (GAN) algorithms developed in 2014. GAN is able to run two algorithms simultaneously. One of them constantly generates images, while the other thoroughly processes them, filtering out the failed images .

The working principle of generative-adversarial networks has brought artificial intelligence close to human thinking. This enables it to use imagination and take a critical approach to the received information. The activity of the two components of the GAN is balanced and excludes conflict, facilitating the best results .

Three artworks from the Series of Portraits of the Fictional Belamy family created by Obvious as well as works of other AI-based art stars will be shown in Russia for the first time .

The majority of the pieces included in the display are the result of processing large bulk of big data with the aid of AI technology .

Lulwa Al-Homoud from Saudi Arabia uses the Arabic alphabet as a basis to create the abstract graphical form of a new language that aspires to become a universal means of communication .

The installation by Italian artist Davide Quayola represents the AI “view” on French impressionist paintings, while Refik Anadol from Turkey creates his work Machine hallucinations using the latest GAN algorithm which processed 100,000 photographs of Gothic and modern architecture .

In his work Kostya Novoselov, awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics in 2010 for a discovering of a new form of carbon - graphene, examines the limits of the potential of machine learning, drawing parallels with artworks created by humans.

The participants of the exhibition are:

Mario Klingemann (Germany), Davide Quayola (Italy), Lulwah Al-Homoud (Saudi Arabia), Daniah Al Saleh (Saudi Arabia), Sun Xun (China), Aaajiao (China), ::Vtol:: (Russia), Kostya Novoselov in Collaboration with Zhestkov Studio (Russia - UK), Egor Kraft (Russia), Refik Anadol (Turkey), Obvious (France), Team Void (South Korea), Jonathan Monaghan (USA), Norimichi Hirakawa (Japan).

The exhibition is co-curated by Dmitry Ozerkov, head of the State Hermitage’s Department of Contemporary Art and head of the Hermitage 20/21 project and Victoria Kondrashova, director of The Aksenov Family Foundation.

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