Artist Ian Cheng’s Simulations Uncover Humanity In Artificial Intelligence – COOL HUNTING

Astounding and unprecedented, Ian Cheng’s exhibition Life After BOB, currently on view at NYC’s The Shed until 19 December, champions art at the intersection of artificial intelligence and cognitive science. In fact, there’s no exhibit quite like it. On one side of The Shed’s fourth level, a 48-minute narrative animation, titled “Life After BOB: The Chalice Study,” built using the Unity video game engine, plays. It follows 10-year-old character Alice Wong after her father installs an experimental AI, dubbed BOB (short for “Bag of Beliefs”), within her. On the other half of the room, the same animation plays but at the viewers’ command. Using their phones as remotes, they can pause, rewind and zoom into the animation to uncover more information about the characters, fauna or objects. Then, whether outside or inside the exhibit, viewers can update and evolve the animation through editing the artwork’s Wiki page, where edits integrate into the simulation in real time.

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