Artificial Intelligence Art and Aesthetics Research Group (AIAARG)

日本語 / English

AI Art & Aesthetics Exhibition
“What If AI Composed for Mr. S?”

  • * Record
  • 22 July - 7 October, 2019
    The Container, Tokyo
  • Mr. S and Mr. N are real characters. Mr. S had asked Mr. N to compose music based on his “instruction sheets,” and Mr. N had long served as his ghostwriter. Meanwhile, Mr. S had proclaimed that he is completely deaf so that he composes musical pieces note by note from his innermost core. The resulting “Symphony No. 1” attracted a far greater number of majority who admired the piece, with some even moved to tears, than a very selective minority who expressed strong hatred, but the success was later turned over into a scandal as Mr. N revealed his engagement as the ghostwriter.
  • We AIAARG (Artificial Intelligence Art and Aesthetics Research Group) do not see this case just in the framework of a lawsuit. Rather, we see it as a testcase that poses questions like “What if Mr. S employed AI, instead of a human specialist, to compose for him? Then how would it matter? Or nothing matters?” Of course it is possible to claim that the unique talent of Mr. N is irreplaceable, but the case can remind us of different perspectives, such as the creativity of Mr. S' “instruction sheet” itself, or the contingent status of authorship made explicit by the intervention of AI as the Other/technology.
  • For example, Johannes Vermeer is supposed to have produced his painting with the help of an optical device called “camera obscura.” Although no existing evidence or record can support this theory firmly, it is generally believed and well accepted not as a negative factor for his legacy. But in those days, the device might be seen as a sort of embarrassing “cheat sheet,” which would suggest the lack of true mastery as a painter, and Vermeer might be desperate to keep it secret. It is also not impossible to imagine the painter might state he produces his work based on his own accurate sketch just as others, and if that is the case, it poses a question about its difference from Mr. S' falsified authorship.
  • Today it is difficult to find creativity in camera obscura itself. What about the autonomous creativity of an AI-composer, if realized, who just like Mr. N can compose musical pieces based on given instruction sheets? Rather, composers who would start from writing instructions right away are arguably more creative. First of all, it is very debatable whether an AI composer that can operate just as Mr. S is ever possible.

Outline of the Exhibition

  • [Title]

    • AI Art & Aesthetics Exhibition “What If AI Composed for Mr. S?”
  • [Artist]

    • Artificial Intelligence Art and Aesthetics Research Group (AIAARG)
  • [Period]

    • 22 July (Mon) - 7 October (Mon), 2019 / Closed on Tuesdays
    • * Opening night reception + publication launch: 22 July, 19:30-21:30
  • [Venue]

  • [Open hours]

    • Mon 11:00-21:00
      Tue closed
      Wed 11:00-21:00
      Thu 11:00-21:00
      Fri 11:00-21:00
      Sat 10:00-20:00
      Sun 10:00-20:00
      Holiday 10:00-20:00

    • *No photo please at this exhibition.
  • [Publication]

  • [Organized by]

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