“Who inspires who?” Aesthetics in front of AI art


  • Alice Barale Università degli Studi di Milano




AI art, aesthetics, neural networks, Artificial Intelligence


AI art certainly belongs among the most under-researched art forms of today. While the ethical aspects of AI are often discussed, its implications for aesthetics are rarely considered. The reason is perhaps that the ability of AI to produce art is a very recent development. Artificial intelligence is becoming more and more important nowadays due to the many changes it has made in our lives. In this context, one of the most surprising fields in which AI has suddenly progressed in the last few years concerns the very human (until now) capacity for artistic (and in a more general sense, aesthetic) expression. However, the general public still tends to confuse AI art with the more general category of digital art, and what AI really does in the artistic field is scarcely known. AI art is not only computer assisted but computer generated. In AI art there is at least one part of the artistic process that is left to the machine. The artist gives the AI some data and has to wait, in order to see how the AI will elaborate upon them. AI, therefore, becomes not just a tool for artists, but also something different, the nature of which needs to be explored. What does AI art have to say about our way of seeing art, and perhaps about our way of seeing the world in general? This will be the leading question of this paper, which will be addressed through the analysis of some relevant aspects of this new kind of art.