Natalia Evelyn Bencicova

#artificialtears

The future of artificial intelligence

This time I would like to write about my current project, #artificialtears. As is the case with all my long-term projects, it follows a path of thinking which I am taking at the moment, partly influenced by the main theme of the Vienna Biennale with the identical title, to which I refer. 

This exhibition, which consists of several items, deals with the future of artificial intelligence, questioning dependency, morality and the bias of human-beings in relation to this topic. Reaction to such an advanced form of technology is often a combination of love and fear. At the same time, we hope for our salvation, but fear downfall and the domination over human-kind. AI proves us to be creators of something powerful, yet frightening, it makes man feel divine, but also fragile and mortal, replaceable by a device. 

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This problematic opens-up an infinite number of questions, but one issue in particular captured my attention. In all the dilemmas and discussions, we draw a division between us and them, or even it as an object of our creation. It is as if we forget that real progress can provide the absolute union of these two species into a state where any recognition based on difference can become so blurred that it will be impossible to say on which side you stand.

The definition of what it means to live, or just to function, can be easily reshaped even if we shift the focus from origin (how I/it comes into existence) to the purpose (why I/it comes into existence) of creation.

What is a difference between human and machine?  

My vision of the future is very elegant, sterile and clean. Reality is just a blank canvas upon which we project. The nothingness of the world we see suggests that everything is happening inside, in the mind, the process(or) of thinking.

The main character takes the classical female appearance based on perfection and stereotype. It represents the woman designed (by others or herself) to satisfy the general definition of her kind. 

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#artificialtears depicts the moment of uncertainty, a kind of alienation in the most ordinary state of performing a stereotypical (act or given) task. The glimpse of a second when the pattern gets broken and the meaning, or more precisely the meaninglessness, of one's own action is revealed. It does not necessarily show the future where machines acts like humans, but rather, or at the same time, the world in which humans act like machines – this is not so far from our everyday reality. 

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The project consists of scenes taking place at different locations, but visually unified by a soft, diffuse, almost painterly quality of light. To create such an even atmosphere on different settings, I used my Siros L kit with strip-boxes and Octabox modifiers. 

While the Octabox provided a soft, flat, evenly-distributed light, the strip-box was useful when I needed a more direct light flow on a person or on just part of the scene. We often use it as a replacement for, or as an enhancement of, daylight coming from the window or lamp. 

Should you need more light, but there is no place to hide the strobes, there is a small trick: Shoot the scene with the subject lit by strobes and then shoot the whole space exposing for ambient light, using multiple exposures if needed, as you can see on the examples bellow.

Hope you enjoy this project and I look forward to sharing my next stories with you!

 

 

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