Bibliotheca Hertziana – Max Planck Institute for Art History
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INSAM Journal of Contemporary Music, Art and Technology, Issue 2, 2019
Main Theme of the Issue: Artificial Intelligence in Music, Arts and Theory
Publisher: INSAM Institute for Contemporary Artistic Music, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Section: THE MAIN THEME
Abstract: This paper will deal with the mythological figure of Narcissus in new media art. In visual arts in general, this myth is usually used to reflect on the relationship between the artist and his actual work. There are countless examples of artists from antiquity to the present age that deal with subjectivity in their work by recurring the Narcissus theme. But different to those adaptations, works of the New Media Art since the 1970s reflect more about the technology and subjectivity of the observer through the theme of Narcissus. The use of time-based media allows the artists to address the observer immediately through interaction and let him become a part of the work and therefore become a part of the cognitive process. The argument of this paper is that only through the use of time-based art could the self-awareness of the observer be discussed instead of only a reflecting on the work itself and the reception-process. Against this backdrop, the paper will focus on the use of AI as a ‘material’ in contemporary art and how it extends this cognitive process. In addition to other works from the history of new media art the work Narciss (2018) by the German art collective Waltz Binaire will be in the center of this discussion about AI in and as artistic practice.
Keywords: artificial intelligence, consciousness, media-awareness, Narcissus, new media art, self-awareness, Waltz Binaire