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Thursday, October 21, 2021
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Can Artificial Intelligence Create Art? Yes, it Can. Here’s All About it

Written by Nayantara Singh, a grade 7 student.

Recently, a robot called Sophia made a ‘self-portrait’ that sold for almost $700k (that’s approximately Rs.5 crores!)

By I Kid You Not , in Art Explained Technology , at March 30, 2021 Tags: , ,

Written by Nayantara Singh, a grade 7 student.

Recently, a robot called Sophia made a ‘self-portrait’ that sold for almost $700k (that’s approximately Rs.5 crores!)

Before I tell you more, here’s a little about what AI is

Explained simply – Artificial intelligence, or AI, is basically the ability of a gadget such as a computer or robot, to do things that usually would be done by humans. These tasks performed by AI are activities that need human intelligence or brain space. Hence, AI is designed to replicate the intelligence that humans are born with.

AI Can do repetitive tasks well..that’s our impression. But, what we don’t know is that AI can be creative as well.

Can AI produce ‘real art’?

Well, it’s definitely a controversial topic. Some may call the produced work extremely creative, while others can not consider it as art. So, I’m just going to state what we know and what has been done.

When did this idea start? What was the first instance of art being produced this way?

It’s difficult to say what was the first instance of AI producing art, or the first time the idea was stated, as so many people around the world may have thought of this. But, one of the earlier ones was Simon Colton, a British computer scientist. He has been developing a software to turn photographs into artwork. He started making it back in 2006, and got the idea even before.

What was the first AI produced painting sold?

On 25th October, 2018, Christie’s New York auction, sold the first AI-generated painting for  $432,500 dollars! (Rs.3,17,56,247!)This was created be a computer algorithm.

Are there other algorithms or robots that create art?

Yes. Here’s more on that.

In 2019, a life-like robot painter called ‘Ai-Da’ was created by Aidan Meller. Ai- Da’s name and overall creation was inspired by the mathematician Ada Lovelace, who was the first person to write a computer program.

Ai Da’s first exhibition was in the summer of 2019, and had 20 paintings, 8 drawings, 4 sculptures and 2 video creations. She sold over 1 million pounds worth of artwork! This is how she looks-

File:Ai-Da Robot at Abu Dhabi Art.jpg - Wikimedia Commons
Image Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ai-Da_Robot_at_Abu_Dhabi_Art.jpg

As stated above, recently, another life like robot (they’re known as humanoids), called Sophia made a ‘self portrait’ that sold for almost $700k. The painting was sold in Hong Kong, along with others for $688k! But, Sophia didn’t do it alone. Artist Andrea Bonaceto worked alongside her. This is how Sophia looks-

File:Sophia (robot).jpg
Image Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sophia_(robot).jpg

Lastly, how are these paintings made?

For the first painting sold by Christie, it isn’t complicated. There’s a generator, in which 15,000 portraits from the 14th to the 20th century were fed in. The algorithm took parts from some paintings, and blended them together in a way that it became a new painting. There was also a discriminator, which helped to spot parts that didn’t look organic for rectification.

For Ai Da’s paintings, the method was more developed. To put it simply, the robot analyzes thousands of artworks and images, to understand how to create art with a similar authenticity. The algorithm tries to produce original artwork. It’s a little complicated, but really, our brain works in a similar way.

How do you learn something new? Take sports for example. You watch others do it, and your brain analyzes it into steps, so that you can do it. 

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