Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Artist Blog Post: HAROLD COHEN

His work being exhibited in many major museums, Harold Cohen is a well-renowed computer science artist. Cohen developed an impressive machine called AARON that can compose it's own paintings. He started producing art in the late sixties, around the time that computer programming was under the radar. He taught this robot how to create every thing from black and white abstractions to complex human anatomy and animals. This is whats called "procedural knowledge", where Cohen tells the robot what it knows, and then AARON decides what to do with that knowledge. Others claim that AARON is very creative but Cohen argues that just because something has a brain doesn't mean it is creative. 

Computers are not living beings who experience life and emit emotions of all kinds. This machine that he created really struck me as an amazing reminder that even though we have such close and intimate relationships with technology, they will never be human, just a puppet of one's ingenuity. Maybe in that sense, if Cohen wanted to, he could try to make AARON human-like, but I don't think that is what he was going for. 

It was almost as if the program said, ‘Stop telling me how to do things. Tell me what you want done and I’ll do it my way.’— artist Harold Cohen on AARON

Oil and acrylic on canvas

Oil on canvas

Mother and Daughter
Painting created by AARON

Standing Figure with Decorated Background
Oil on Canvas

Meeting on Gauguin's Beach 
Painting by AARON

References---->  1.; Backstory on the AARON
2.; Works of Harold Cohen
3.; Explanations of how the AARON works

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