Filtered By: Scitech

Humanoid robot Ai-Da creates art using algorithms

At the top of Egypt's vast Giza plateau, a hyper-realistic AI "robot artist" is exhibiting her sculpture against the backdrop of the country's famed pyramids, the last remaining wonder of the ancient world.

Draped in a patterned orange dress and silk green scarf, Ai-Da is said to be the world's first AI robot to create art similar to that of humans, using multiple AI algorithms, her metal-bare arms and the cameras in her eyes to paint the world she sees around her.

Ai-Da's creative artwork is a 2.5 meter-long, clay-made sculpture based on the Riddle of the Sphinx. The humanoid's creation re-invents herself with three robotic legs, lying sideways inside a large metal and glass sarcophagus.

The artist herself was devised over two years in Oxford by Aidan Meller, a specialist in modern and contemporary art. The robot artist was however built and assembled internationally with the help of 30 engineers and experts, said Meller.

Her drawing arms and her drawing AI algorithms were designed by young Egyptian engineers Salaheldin Al Abd and Ziad Abass, who both attended Ai-Da's exhibition in Giza.

But the humanoid artist made the sculpture with her own hands, which had to be covered with gloves to protect the electric wires from the water and clay.

"So all the marks that you see on this astonishing sculpture have all been done by the fingers of Ai-Da," Meller said.

"Ai-Da, although a mechanical humanoid, is actually foreshadowing what can be done biologically," he added, referring to increasingly sophisticated biotechnological interventions added to the human body.

Ai-Da and her chilling sculpture are held parallel to the Forever Is Now exhibition, an international art collective merging contemporary art with ancient heritage.

It is the first exhibition of its kind to be held by the 4,500-year-old UNESCO world heritage site.

The AI machine was detained by Egyptian security on arrival, and was held for 10 days before being released on the eve of its exhibition.

When asked about the incident that drew significant media attention, Meller said that "it's been very sensitive to come here."

Reuters has contacted Egyptian authorities for comment.

"Ai-Da has caused quite a lot of reaction," said Meller, "But we would like to really now focus on her artwork."


Tags: robot artist