New Beginnings, Old Endings, Secrets Secreting, 2019-20

Installation view of New Beginnings, Old Endings, Secrets Secreting, 2019-20 
unique pigmented prints, 14 x 11 to 24 x 20 inches

Exhibitions and Presentations
In The Wake of Slumber, Paradice Palase, Brooklyn, NY, 2021
A Dream Within a Dream, Playform Studio, New York, NY, 2020
ARTificial Intelligence, RISE, New York, NY, 2019

New Beginnings, Old Endings, Secrets Secreting delves into the transformative force of artificial intelligence tied to image manipulation and self-perception. The soft, almost diaphanous quality of my work in this series speaks to a fading of tangible reality, a melting away into new, undefined shapes. Drawing inspiration from my earlier engagement with imperfections, this series extends that fascination to the quirks and flaws inherent in early AI-generated images. Unlike the polished, seamless creations of advanced AI, these early outputs possess a raw, unrefined beauty. Their errors and inconsistencies are not just technical limitations but are imbued with a sense of authenticity and vulnerability. They reveal the nascent stages of AI, where the imperfection was more pronounced, offering a stark contrast to the increasingly slick imagery of today's digital landscape.

I used my past body of work Color, Balance as data set to train a Generative Adversarial Network (GAN) to create new portraits. The result of this process is the base for digital paintings I subtly airbrush in Photoshop. For New Beginnings, Old Endings, Secrets Secreting the fascination lies not in the perfection of digital replication but in the imperfect, the incomplete. Each piece is a testament to the beauty of blemishes both human and machine-made. The errors of early AI, much like the facial flaws I previously explored, are poignant reminders of the unique and the real. They represent a critical juncture in our journey with technology, where the imperfect and the unfinished become a canvas for deeper reflection on the transformation of self in the digital age.

The works I create have a soft haunting quality to them and are self-portraits as much as images of others. Titles such as “Distance is the New Intimacy” and “I Worry Lines Away” point towards disconnects between social media, self-perception and image altering techniques. Computer scientists often refer to early neural network images as ‘dreams’ due to their soft surreal-like quality. Considered a stepping stone in the search for artificial intelligence, hopes and fears surrounding these technologies attach themselves to ideas larger than any individual advance. 

The subject prompts consideration of my dreams and nightmares; real and imagined, small and large, wholesome, and vapid. I pair each work with a specific hope or fear of my own. These imbued feelings are bits of my unseen character and help shape each work. In many ways AI feels like an erasure of the self. Already, technology causes feelings of alienation, effacement and rising division. As artists, the medium can feel larger than our ability to wield it. 

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