Funded by the CALQ, the Chantier IA is a new cycle of reflection and support for artistic creation based on questions surrounding artificial intelligence (AI) that will last until 2026.
The development of artificial intelligence has occupied much of the conversation in recent months. The release of ChatGPT and other generative algorithms that produce images, videos, movie scripts, lesson plans or pass university-level exams raises a series of fundamental questions about the place of human beings in a world where machines can replace many complex and creative tasks. Beyond these existential questions, generative LLM (Large Language Model) algorithms raise issues relating to intellectual property, human creativity and the very role of art.
There’s no need to bury our heads in the sand: even if these algorithms are currently controlled by a handful of corporations who obey a frantic pace of launch without considering the potential risks of their AI, refusing these technologies will slow down neither their development nor their deployment. What’s more, we believe that artists have an important role to play in understanding the potential of AI and in building a critical relationship with these contemporary golems.We believe that artists have the capacity to move these questions onto the terrain of representation, to offer a critical distance between the human world and these artificial technologies, and to participate in the development of a healthy knowledge of the issues already raised by these robots, for whom the gateway to natural language has opened up a new way into the human psyche.
It’s difficult to dismiss the mythology and the collective imagination when assessing the impact of such a technological revolution. A future in which artificial intelligence has a conscience can only be envisaged in a relationship of simulacra, in which humans attribute an anthropomorphic character to an algorithm. The same applies to the fantasy of immortality that new technologies hold out the possibility of a graft, or even a fusion of human and machine, distancing the former from its emotions and bringing the latter closer to consciousness. From the hope offered by a technological solutionism to paranoia, the spectrum of emotions in the face of AI is chaotic, which is why we urgently need to open up a space at a distance from the world, a space where artists look at and reflect on the machine for what it is, for what it can and cannot do, to show it naked, to shed light on the mythology that has been built around it since we renamed it artificial intelligence instead of LLM or deep learning algorithms. It’s urgent that artists get involved, and take the special look at this new world that only works of art can offer.
For 2023 – and until 2026 – we are launching a brand new cycle of reflection and support for artistic creation around the issues of artificial intelligence (AI). Algorithmic automation now affects almost every sphere of our society, often unbeknownst to us because it is camouflaged in the black box of our technological devices. And, as mentioned above, it’s a field that’s currently expanding and growing in complexity at an accelerating pace. It therefore seems essential to us to devote sustained attention to it, in order to understand and appropriate the tools associated with this technology – and to unwind the reflexive thread that can emerge from it.
Through a series of artistic residencies and related activities, including workshops and exhibitions, Sporobole aims to contribute to the development of knowledge around AI and algorithms. The aim is to reflect on their role, not only their assumed function, but also their hidden agenda; to divert their prescribed use; to explore their potential through situational and contextual displacement; to deepen our critical and ethical posture towards algorithms; to consider possible modalities of “cohabitation”. An approach privileging a co-construction of knowledge will also be put forward through certain residencies, where the notion of knowledge transfer will be particularly emphasized.
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On request, during the project submission process, we can accommodate people with disabilities or special conditions.