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Vast web worlds of the artist Ava Zevop: what does artificial intelligence reveal as a map of the world?



The exhibition will be open until June 2, 2023

An exhibition by Ava Zevop is opening in the Osmo/za space in Ljubljana, which explores what artificial intelligence, which acts as a system of biases both at the level of computation and at the level of cultural processes, reveals as a map of the world.

Project Wide web worlds produces Ljudmila Society, Laboratory for Science and Art, and she is the curator Maja Burja. Despite its apparent immateriality, artificial intelligence is deeply embedded in our social, political and economic structures, they emphasize at the exhibition.

“Ljudmila se society in in recent years, he has also been dealing with generative approaches and artificial intelligence and its potential, and we also draw attention to problems, that come with it. One of the topics that is in in the foreground as well in to this project, is the bias of these technologies and a critical observation of what artificial intelligence pulls from culture and what potentiates,” said the curator before tonight’s opening of the exhibition.

Bias (bias) is, according to her, today I singwhich we often hear, but it means different things. “For a cultural analyst, it may mean something else like for a machine learning expert.” With Ava Yawn they are collaborating for the second time, last year she presented her project at the same place “In the beginning there was static… in the end there was a connected world”. There, she approached artificial intelligence by researching the relationship between image, concept and the world.

“She researched the databases that are used to train these machine learning models. The databases are in largely formed like set of images with internet, which is collected without the consent of the owners of the images. The World Wide Web also summarizes the stereotypes and biases that are present in culture. V in a previous project, she explored the historical depth of databases, in and this project observes the patterns that these models reinforce,” describes Burja.

“The artist relies on atlases and maps of the world like to specific organizations of knowledge”Ava Yawn explains that there are three models – Stable DiffusionKandinsky-2 and CogView, which generalize the image of the world. Layout Wide Web Worlds consists of two parts. The first compares the diverse products of three artificial intelligence models for image generation, which can differ in the structure of the models as well as in the level of the databases with which they are trained. Benjamin Fele was an expert in artificial intelligence, a graphic designer during the layout visuals well Maruša Uhan.

“The images presented at the exhibition in in the form of visual schemes, were generated using the official titles of nation states like text instructions (prompt) to generate images. When designing visual schemes that organize the generated image in continents, the artist relies on atlases and maps of the world like to specific organizations of knowledge or visualization of data, which are not neutral or objective ways representations the world, but always also contain the specific point of view and the political, social and aesthetic act of ‘world-making’ that establishes spaces of different meanings and (in)visibility,” the curator wrote.

The second part of the Wide Interwoven Worlds project represents aesthetically ambivalent ones sculptureswhich were generated using the UI model for generating 3D objects. “We used a database to generate 3D objects ScanTheWorldwhich contains three-dimensional scans thousands of cultural artifacts classified according to the current location of these objects. Sculptures we returned them to the locations where they were supposed to originate from, but the bases are already there anyway due to colonialist processes dislocated,” says the artist. The database thus in a way reflects the wider one problem (mainly Western) museum collections, which contain objects “collected” on colonialist expeditionswhich are therefore separated from the locations and contexts of their origin, emphasizes Burja.

“The World Wide Web Recreates Tourism Iconography”V in the exhibition space, the works are placed on five plots representing the continents. The question that arose for them was also what is a continent? Ava Yawn is in layout decided for America, Oceania, Europe, Asia, Africa. According to the artist, they aimed at “Mappa Mundi” with ideological representations of the world. “As it turned out, locations are overloaded with tourism and they also get such an image, a kind of National Geographic imaginary, the World Wide Web recreates tourist iconography,” says the artist, who otherwise lives and works between Ljubljana and Brussels.

Guided tour of the exhibition
Saturday, May 27, 2023 | 13:00 Friday, June 2, 2023 | 18:00

As Burja adds, we can also observe the specific aesthetics of documentary and media photography representations. “Some countries are, for example, simply summed up by an image like desert or war zone. The image does not reflect the whole, a good example of this is Egypt with the image of hieroglyphs. The layout leaves room for the visitor to weave their own webs of meaning. Why is this facility on this continent, in this country? Is this object sedentary figurea portrait?” asks the visitor.

At the same time, according to Burja, we can draw parallels with “the expansionist logic of an infinite collection”, which guides the creation of databases for training neural networks, in whose world is flattened in the form of data that are extracted from their original contexts through the processes of extraction and categorization. However, they are complex and culturally, historically, geographically and politically specific datasets in abstracted and transformed by these processes in an attempt to build an objective and universal image of the world, which provides the basis for the generation of new artifacts.

Discourse around these topics is rapidly changing”“We can observe the bias of artificial intelligence models at representations, where bias is difficult to ‘measure’. When you are dealing with a topic that develops and changes so quickly, you find yourself in the third part of the project, and already a new issue appears that can completely change the work, it is a very unpredictable process, the technology of the generation of 3D models was especially new for all of us .” Also discourse around these topics is rapidly changing – years ago it was warned that databases are not neutral, today they are already thinking about their “neutralization”, for which there are still no clear answers, Maja Burja reflects on this.

“With specific representative models, we were thinking about whether it is a broader system of bias. A certain amount bias is something that is necessary for the models to work. There are more levels, but the question is whether we can talk about the intertwining of the cultural and the mathematical bias. That was the key,” Ava concluded Zevon. That’s what it’s for like adds Burja, so many interdisciplinary groups that have to vocabulary and concepts of new technologies to coordinate.

Ava Yawn by researching different media, it addresses questions related to the challenged notions of today’s reality, the stylistics and semantics of digital culture, and the role of media and technology in processes of “creating worlds”. Currently in explores synthetic media in his work like a reversal in cultural paradigms and machine learning like the acceleration of colonial reason. V in the past it also operated under the name strtgm.

Among other things, her works were exhibited at a group exhibition Fever Dream in Kresija Gallery (2023), at the festival Design FESTIVAL Ghent in Design Museum Ghent (2022), in a group exhibition Let it go be Queer! in Ljubljana City Gallery (2021) and at the 26th International Festival of Computer Art – MFRU: Infrastructure complex: Altered Earth (2020).

Source: Rtvslo

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