The world's first robotic self-portraits, painted by an android called Ai-Da, have just been unveiled in a new art exhibition in London. Surprisingly accurate images that question the role of artificial intelligence (AI) in human society and challenge the idea that art is exclusively a human trait, according to its creators.
Is it possible to take self-portraits without having a “self” to portray?
Ai-Da is a life-sized android artist powered by artificial intelligence. He is able to paint, sculpt, gesture, blink and speak. Ai-Da is designed to look and behave like a human woman with a female voice. A team of programmers, art and robotics experts, and psychologists from the University of Oxford and Leeds in England spent two years to develop it. It is named after Ada Lovelace, the pioneering English mathematician considered one of the first computer programmers.
In the past, Ai-Da's work consisted of abstract paintings. He raised a lot of money: over a million dollars in sales. Today, however, the android has moved on to self-portraits: the first self-portraits of a car. Three of these "pictorial selfies" are exhibited from May 18 at the Design Museum in an exhibition entitled "Ai-Da: Portrait of the Robot", until 29 August.
"These images are meant to shock," he says Aidan Meller, the gallery owner behind the creation of Ai-Da. "They are meant to raise questions about where we are going. What is our human role if so much can be replicated through technology?"
Ai-Da's new self-portraits are a combination of AI and advanced robotics. The android's eyes are actually cameras that allow you to "look" at what he is painting or sculpting, in this case himself, and replicate it. The robotic arms are also controlled by artificial intelligence.
It is an excellent time to reflect on our relationship with technology: never as in the last two years have we relied on it to overcome difficulties and limitations. After provocative "third eye" project, that of robotic self-portraits seems a natural consequence.
Is Ai-Da a self-portrait artist or a work of art?
Although Ai-Da is often labeled as the "android artist" whose self-portraits are considered art, his very existence and character are also considered works of art. But where does human influence end and where does android AI begin?
A question that has led to controversial and stimulating discussions.
Some people think it's the worst thing ever and feel threatened, while others are really horny. Its very existence is somehow wrong, and we are aware of that.Aidan Meller