AI Artist Spotlight: Golan Levin
The use of artificial intelligence (AI) to produce artwork has enabled artists to take their creativity and productivity a notch higher. This technology has also paved the way for the incorporation of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) into the crypto market, allowing digital artists to make more money from their digital pieces.
With this technology, renowned artists like Golan Levin are creating unique pieces that explore the interactions between humans and technology. For instance, Levin has been creating art pieces that focus mainly on the design of systems for the development, manipulation, and functionality of simultaneous images and sounds.
He does this as part of his ongoing exploration of the formal languages of interactivity and nonverbal communication protocols in cybernetic structures. Through virtual environments, performances, and digital relics, Reben collaborates with other artists to add creative elements to digital technology that highlights the relationship between humans and machines.
He also uses text-to-image AI technology to reveal people’s interactions with each other and the connection between intellectual communication and interactivity. His work has earned him numerous accolades and international recognition, allowing him to compete with other illustrious AI artists like Alexander Reben, Sofia Crespo, Memo Akten, and Mario Klingemann.
Born in 1972 in New York City, Golan Levin is a popular media artist, performer, engineer, and composer, who specialises in developing artefacts and organising events that explore flexible new ways of reactive expressions. Levin graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a self-designed Bachelor’s degree in Art and Design in 1994, later earning a Master’s degree in Media Arts and Sciences from the MIT Media Lab in 2000.
While still studying, Levin took up the role of Interface Designer at Paul Allen’s Interval Research Corporation. Through this role, he learned about interactive new media art, which would later have a significant impact on his career as a new media artist. Between 2002 and 2003, Levin served as an Eyebeam resident.
After graduating, he taught computational design in several institutions around New York City, including Cooper Union, Parsons School of Design, and Columbia University. In 2004, he was employed by Carnegie Mellon University as a trainer, and today, he’s an Associate Professor of Electronic Time-Based Art at the CMU School of Art.
He also enjoys several courtesy appointments in the CMU School of Computer Science, School of Architecture, Entertainment Technology Center, and School of Design, where he teaches computation art and studies new relations between machine code and visual art. Since 2009, he has served as the director of the Frank-Ratchye Studio for Creative Inquiry at CMU.
As noted above, Levin’s artwork mainly explores the design systems for the development, manipulation, and functionality of real-time images and sounds with the aim of understanding the language of interactivity and of nonverbal communication in cybernetic mechanisms. One of his most illustrious projects is titled Free Universal Construction Kit, which he developed in 2012.
This project is a collection of numerous 3D-printable converters for common toy creation systems created in partnership with R. Shawn Sims. This project is part of the lasting collection of the Museum of Modern Art.
Another renowned work by Levin is known as Terrapattern, which he created in 2016. This is an open-ended tool designed to support visual query-by-example in satellite imagery. In 2014, Levin created a project called Augmented Hand Series, which is a real-time interactive program representing playful, dreamlike, and uncanny transformations of its users’ hands.
Since he began his professional career as an artist, Levin has shown his work at numerous exhibitions around the world, including at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, the Neuberger Museum, the Whitney Biennial, the Museum of Contemporary Art, the NTT InterCommunication Center, MoMA, and many others.
His latest work revolves around interactive robotics, the theme of gaze, and machine vision. Recently, Levin gave a Ted Talk in which he discussed technology as a form of art.