Chicago-based artist Benjamin Grosser’s provocative work explores the social, cultural and political implications of our digital age. Computer vision is typically used to further extend human vision. Yet in Grosser’s work, it instead enables the “vision” of computers themselves. Grosser used computer vision algorithms and artificial intelligence routines to produce software that gives a computational system a degree of volition in deciding what it would like to watch. As we watch a machine watching well known scenes from films such as Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey the work humorously and hauntingly encourages us to ponder the quality and character of machine “consciousness.” How does a computer “see” differently than us? What does computer vision suggest about our own culturally evolved ways of seeing? What are the implications of computers seeing for us?
About the author
Benjamin Grosser is an artist whose works shows as interactive experiences, machines, and systems that explore the cultural, social, and political implications of software. He holds an MFA in new media and an MM in music composition from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he teaches in the School of Art & Design. His works have been exhibited at major international venues and festivals, including Eyebeam in New York, The White Building in London, Boston Cyberarts Gallery in Boston, the Telecom Italia Future Centre in Venice, and the Northwest Film Forum in Seattle. Later this year his work will be part of the FILE Festival in São Paulo, Brazil and Check Reality at eFlux in Udine, Italy. Grosser’s recognitions include curation into the Rhizome ArtBase and awards from Terminal and Creative Divergents.t