AMI — May 2020 Newsletter
Hello. Welcome to May, and a monthly newsletter from Artists + Machine Intelligence.
In the past year, we’ve experimented with formats to keep you, dear readers, informed of program news. We’re restarting this monthly newsletter to share what we’re up to. Let us know what you’d like to see more or less of in the comments below.
This month, as I sit to write this newsletter, I am surrounded by magazine cut-outs and clippings.
Has anyone else succumbed to the calm of collage?
My manner of collage is very much a manual one: cut-up, tape-down, pin-up. It’s far, far from the ‘Cut-and-Paste’ kind, the latest AR prototype to take the internet by storm from Google Arts & Culture artist-in-residence Cyril Diagne. (Think Weird Cuts, but in-camera.)
While May is generally a time for launches and announcements (ahem, I/O), this is no playbook year. In lieu of (very big) program announcements (do read on for previews!), I’ve found energy and inspiration in my weekly conversations with collaborators working at the intersection of art, technology, and machine creativity.
Last month, after featuring an excerpt from Naho Matsuda’s every thing every time, Naho kindly took a break from grading student projects (she’s currently an instructor at Goldsmiths’ Interaction Research Studio) to speak to us about homesickness, memory, and the power of abstraction to reveal new narratives. Her latest project, ‘Moderately Interested,’ examines the role of language in how we choose jobs, careers, callings. Read Naho’s Q&A.
I’m also excited to share this week’s Q&A with artist, poet, and computer programmer Allison Parrish. Allison shares her passion for the material qualities of language in asemic poetry (think: mock letters, pseudo-writing, drawing). Plus, the poetry and prose of Anne Carson’s Plainwater. Read Allison’s Q&A.
Finally, I am happy to announce that a new research grant cycle will re-open in June 2020. Research grants support faculty at non-profit universities pursuing creative AI research and/or tool-making. Follow Artists + Machine Intelligence (right here, or on twitter) for more details in the month ahead, and meet past recipients here and here.
So, what’s on my moodboard?
- Japanese photographer Fumi Ishino uses surveillance cameras to explore his homeland remotely. (!!) “This is a way to see what’s going on in my country, because reading the news is just not enough,” he says. “You have to see it for yourself.” Ishino estimates he clicks through 1,200 videos each day, returning at different times to see the subtle changes. (via California Sunday)
- Samanta Schweblin’s latest fiction novel, “Little Eyes.” It’s about “robotic stuffed animals controlled remotely by humans,” and the New York Times describes the work as Schweblin’s answer to “talking about technological without getting caught up in technical terms.” (I’m in!) Read an excerpt, or buy the book at your local community bookstore. Reading club, anyone?
- Interdependence, a new podcast from musicians Holly Herndon and Mat Dryhurst. The logo is eye-catching, the premise is very compelling..and I need a few more episodes before I cast my vote. If you’re a fan, tell me why.
- Radio Garden, a global, live radio station. This sound experiment allegedly went viral in 2016, but it missed my corner of the internet, which is why I’m recommending it now. “Exceptionally vivid, it’s like looking through a keyhole,” writes Rosa Lyster. It’s the closest I’ve come to defying quarantine lock-down. (thank you, Winnie Street)
What are you reading, watching, thinking about? Write me, or leave a comment below.
Stay well, and have a great month ahead.
Eva Kozanecka is a content strategist at Google AI, where she explores how diverse media can improve the representation and communication of emerging technologies. She also co-leads Artists + Machine Intelligence, a program at Google that invites artists to work with engineers and researchers together in the design of intelligent systems. Questions? Feedback? Email email@example.com