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Faculty:

  • Barb LeSavoy, PhD, Associate Professor and Interim Chair, Department of Women and Gender Studies, SUNY Brockport, Brockport, NY

  • Racelar Ho, MFA, PhD Student of Digital Media, York University (Toronto, ON, Canada); Independent experimental art artist and researcher, founder of Independent Various Art Space (IVAS)

  • Sarah Vollmer, BEng, MSc, PhD Student of Digital Media, York University (Toronto, ON, Canada); Independent multidisciplinary researcher and computational artist; co-founder of Independent Various Art Space (IVAS)


Workshop Description:

This hands-on workshop provides participants with a two-fold approach to feminist manifesto-making, one that engages body/minds, and one that engages AI as an art form, allowing a critique of the dangers and possibilities of unassisted and technology assisted intelligences. Manifestos created in the workshop will be published and exhibited in both digital and physical formats at the esteemed academic conference, EVA London 2023, and its associated art exhibition.


 

Introduction

Manifestos, historically potent mechanisms for endorsing transformation and articulating novel conceptions, constitute the foundation of our workshop. This interactive milieu invites attendees to navigate an unprecedented landscape wherein artificial intelligence and human acumen are inextricably intertwined. Each participant is to engage in a collaborative process with our unique artificial intelligence system, "AI Philosopher (AIP)," producing a few lines of manifesto with related writings that encapsulate their viewpoint on a salient feminist issue, particularly as it pertains to the Anthropocene epoch and the subsequent era that unfolds.

This innovative amalgamation of AI and human input ushers us towards a new realm of discourse that defies the conventional parameters of authorship and capitalises on the distinctive potential intrinsic to human-AI collaboration. Through this exploratory endeavour, we aspire to scrutinise the dynamic potentialities of feminism within a post-anthropocentric epoch.



The culmination of our workshop will be embodied in a collective volume, a compendium of the AI-enhanced manifestos and personal writings of each participant. This tangible evidence of our collective journey is to be published and exhibited in both digital and physical formats at the esteemed academic conference, EVA London 2023, and its associated art exhibition. This offering will stand as an enduring tribute to our expedition into envisioning a feminist future beyond the Anthropocene.

 

Objectives of the seminar

Students will learn about and practise the détournement techniques that Guy Debord and Gil J. Wolman, two French political theorists, invented in this workshop. The aim is to challenge and transcend the existing boundaries of commonly accepted signifiers and signifieds concerning objects, events, and others. Drawing inspiration from their seminal publication, A User's Guide to Détournement, students will be tasked with crafting a new dataset for AIP and establishing a fresh set of image-semantic labels. This endeavour is aimed at rerouting and estranging our conventional understanding of feminism and the conditions of humans and post-humans.



During the collaboration


with AIP, students' primary focus should be on the logical construction of the content rather than the technical aspects of programming implementation. Essential aspects to consider include the selection of the target corpus snippets, the interrelationship among these snippets, as well as the choice and arrangement of the target images and their corresponding semantic labels. A critical aspect of this process involves understanding the implications and connections between the chosen signifiers and signifieds. It is worth noting that students will also be required to independently author their respective manifestos; while inspiration may be drawn from GPT4 or related large language models, the integration of AI-generated content into their written chapters is not permitted. This same principle applies to human intelligence's image-semantic labels of signifiers and signifieds.


For the purposes of this workshop, students will be assigned to one of four groups, each tasked with exploring a distinct topic. The collective efforts of these groups will result in the compilation of a comprehensive book. Students lacking suitable electronic devices, such as personal computers, laptops, or tablets, are encouraged to send their formatted content to @ivas.studio. Submission


s may be in the form of a *.txt file (for the AI-human writing part), plain text, or a shared Google Doc or Microsoft Word file (hyperlink) within the body of the email. The same conditions apply for submissions of human intelligence's image-semantic labels of signifiers and signifieds. Please refer to the instructions detailed below for additional guidance.



 

Seminar Outcome: Book Structure and Exhibition

The resultant book of this workshop will be bifurcated into two significant segments: "Feminist Manifesto in the Anthropocene" and "Feminist Manifesto in the Post-Anthropocene." Unique in its construction, the book can be engaged from two distinct directions. The front section, which typically opens from right to left with the spine to the left, will only contain content that human intellect has created and orchestrated. Conversely, the rear part, unconventional with the spine to the right, opens from left to right and showcases content birthed through the collaboration between human minds and artificial intelligence.


It is paramount for students to focus solely on the production of content, with visual and typographic elements being the remit of the IVAS artists. The final embodiment of this collective endeavour will be a tangible book alongside its digital counterpart. This dual-format publication ensures accessibility and longevity, embodying the interplay between humans and artificial intelligence in the pursuit of a feminist future beyond the Anthropocene.


 

Workshop Calendar


Faculty

Racelar Ho; Sarah Vollmer







Faculty

Barb LeSavoy





 











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