AI Here and There: Transatlantic Dialogues on Artificial Intelligence, Society and Innovation
In the past decade Artificial Intelligence (AI) has quietly and quickly become prominent in our daily lives, whether we have realized it or not. AI has made itself indispensable: in our private lives, in the workplace, in sports, and even art. However there are only a select few that know what AI really is about and what this means for us as a society. This four part event series aims at introducing the subject of AI to a broad audience. Each event will be focused on different subjects. Since this is a global topic, we took this opportunity in stride to invite panelists both locally and internationally from Switzerland and the US.
The series is organized by the Consulate General of Switzerland in New York and the Center for Responsible AI | NYU Tandon School of Engineering and hosted by Mona Sloane.
AI, Art, and Creativity
The “AI Here and There" series sets out to create a transatlantic dialogue on the potentials and pitfalls of AI by discussing a range of themes. This fourth conversation will focus on the question of how AI pushes the boundaries of what we often frame as a uniquely human trait — creativity, how art can serve as a way to understand and perhaps critique the ways in which AI plays a role in our social lives, and what role AI technologies can play in the art market. The distinguished panel of Carina Popovici, Marnie Benney, Stephanie Dinkins, and Daniel Bisig will bring perspectives from both Switzerland and the US to the table.
Marnie Benney is an Independent Curator working at the juncture of contemporary art and technology. Over the last decade, she has produced 27 exhibitions in city centers, public spaces, galleries and festivals around the world including the New York Hall of Science, University of Cambridge London, the National Aquarium in Maryland, and The Nook Gallery in Los Angeles. Benney is also the Co-founder and Curator of AIArtists.org, the world’s largest community of artists using Artificial Intelligence, where she provides a platform for artists to share their practice and investigate the implications of AI on society.
Daniel Bisig holds a Ph.D. degree in Natural Sciences. He has worked as a researcher at the Institute for Biochemistry at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology and the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory of the University. He is currently employed as assistant professor at the Center for Dance Research at Coventry University and as research associate at the Institute for Computer Music and Sound Technology of the Zurich University of the Arts.
He is active as a researcher and artist in the fields of artificial intelligence and generative art. As part of his artistic activities, he has realized algorithmic films, interactive installations and audiovisual performances, some of them in collaboration with musicians and choreographers. The derivation of generative algorithms and interaction techniques from simulation principles employed within the synthetic natural sciences forms a central aspect of his work. Currently, his main focus lies on the application of machine learning in dance and choreography.
Stephanie Dinkins is a transmedia artist who creates platforms for dialog about race, gender, aging, and our future histories. Dinkins’ art practice employs emerging technologies, documentary practices, and social collaboration toward equity and community sovereignty. She is particularly driven to work with communities of color to co-create more equitable, values grounded social and technological ecosystems. Dinkins is a professor at Stony Brook University where she holds the Kusama Endowed Professor in Art. Dinkins earned an MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art and is an alumna of the Whitney Independent Studies Program. She exhibits and publicly advocates for inclusive AI internationally at a broad spectrum of community, private, and institutional venues. Dinkins is a 2021 United States Artist Fellow and Knight Arts & Tech Fellow. Previous fellowships, residencies and support include the Artist Fellow of the Berggruen Institute and Lucas Artists Fellow in Visual Arts at Montalvo Art Center, CA Onassis Foundation, Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence, Creative Capital, Soros Equality Fellowship, Data and Society Research Institute Fellowship, Sundance New Frontiers Story Lab, Eyebeam, Pioneer Works Tech Lab, NEW INC, Blue Mountain Center; The Laundromat Project; Santa Fe Art Institute and Art/Omi.
The New York Times featured Dinkins in its pages as an AI influencer. Wired, Art In America, Artsy, Art21, Hyperallergic, the BBC, Wilson Quarterly, and a host of popular podcasts have recently highlighted Dinkins' art and ideas.
Carina Popovici is a co-founder and CEO of Art Recognition, a Zurich-based art tech startup that offers to the art world an AI Engine for art authentication and forgery detection. While being an art lover, she is also an experienced programmer, having developed in the past advanced AI algorithms with applications in physics and finance. Carina is thrilled to put her problem-solving skills and creativity in the service of art and help drastically reduce the number of forgeries circulating on the market. She received a Ph.D. in Theoretical Physics from the University of Tuebingen and has been a Research Fellow in theoretical particle and condensed matter physics, before taking up an appointment in the Swiss financial industry. She has been a Quantitative Risk Specialist at Credit Suisse and the fintech startup Fintegral. Art Recognition is one of the few Swiss startups operating at the forefront of AI entirely founded and led by women.
Digitalisation offers new opportunities for diplomacy, poverty reduction and sustainable development. But there are also risks involved in the processing of vast amounts of data, the spread of fake news and surveillance. By adopting the Digital Foreign Policy Strategy 2021–2024, Switzerland is acknowledging digitalization as a thematic priority of its foreign policy. The world is constantly changing and needs a hub, in other words a space that brings together all states, businesses and citizens – all directly affected by the new challenges of digitalisation. International Geneva is a hub for digital governance. The goal is to promote transparent debate, strengthen international law and encourage international cooperation in dealing with abuses and surveillance, while paying heed to public opinion, and to increase the benefits of new technologies. This virtual Series “AI Here & There” contributes to this inclusive discussion.
Visit the platform about Swiss innovation: swisstech.
Center for Responsible AI | NYU Tandon School of Engineering
As a research and tool production lab, R/AI is charting a path towards responsible AI. In practice, this means ensuring that technical advances are combined with a shift in business practices and much-needed regulatory mechanisms that are informed by social research and robust public participation.
Launched in 2020, R/AI has conducted research on automated decision making systems in hiring; hosted thought-provoking events to debate trends and spotlight tensions; developed new interdisciplinary research projects; co-generated novel, open-source responsible AI/AI literacies curricula for use with adults in informal learning settings at public libraries; produced a dynamic multi-lingual comic series about responsible data science as well as “nutritional labels” to make AI explainability more transparent; advocated for municipal oversight of automated decision-systems; published papers that move the discourse on responsible AI forward; advised on field-based councils; and supported AI for Good programs such as the Women in AI Accelerator. airesponsibly.com