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Four-Day International Digital Art, NFT fest Takes On Jerusalem


Companies have been tapping into artificial intelligence to drive innovation for a number of years now, using it as a tool across a broad range of industries. Startups have used AI to save lives and increase traffic safety. It is powering robots to assist in surgery, strengthening the IVF process, and has become a writing companion that understands context and meaning.

Artificial intelligence is also disrupting the art world in a big way, with researchers creating machine learning tools that can generate music and paintings. Artificial intelligence can also create artwork that uses algorithms to replicate and mimic previous art styles. This intersection of art and technology which has created a cultural revolution is the reason why Yair Moss and Danielle Zjni have curated this year’s hybrid Digital Arts Festival – ZERO1NE under the theme of the impact of artificial intelligence in digital art.

“Artists have the ability to work with different tools to create something special,” Moss, an artistic co-director of the festival, tells NoCamels, “We’re focusing on AI because this is one of the main tools in our society that impact our daily lives.”

art AI Franz Rosati
Viewers take in Italian artist Franz Rosati’s Latentscape, an audiovisual experience where music is generated through AI and machine learning. Courtesy: Franz Rosati.

“Examination of these new technologies while taking inspiration from past cultures and ideas, enables formulation of contemporary creative expressions. I think this idea is synchronous with the core concept of the Tower of David Museum, looking at the past and thinking about the future,” adds Zini.

The art festival, which will hold a hybrid of physical and virtual events from December 27 through the 30th, will give viewers the chance to take in 30 works of art, six original site-specific pieces, nine lectures, 10 live performances, 12 international artists, and 28 Israeli artists. Many of these events will be livestreamed on the Tower of David website. You can watch it here.

The festival is called ZERO1NE in reference to the two numerals that serve as the basis for all computerized activity.

It “delves directly and indirectly into the enigmatic phenomenon of machine learning and looks at the place of AI in the world of digital art,” according to an announcement. Events will move between different locations around the city of Jerusalem from the Tower of David Museum to Hansen House, a cultural center in a historic leprosy asylum to Mazkeka pub, a home for the independent and alternative art and music scene in Jerusalem. The festival will include audiovisual performances (many of which will also be livestreamed), media installations, lectures, conferences, workshops, and more.

Yair Moss, Danielle Zini
Yair Moss and Danielle Zini are Artistic Co-Directors of this year’s ZERO1NE Digital Arts Festival. focusing on AI.

Although much of the festival is in Hebrew, including an opening discussion called “On the brink of a Cultural Revolution” on Monday, December 27 at 18:00 (Israeli time) between Dr. Milly Perry, chair of the ABC Art Blockchain and Community, and Artistic Director Moss on “the next of everything” (Web3, Blockchain, NFTs, DAOs, AI and the metaverse), there are a number of lectures in English throughout the week by prestigious tech experts, multimedia artists, and researchers.

On Tuesday, the first of two hybrid sessions called Interspecies Communication Hybrid Session No. 1 will include installations by artists like 0rphan Drift, Entangled Others Studio, Tom Love, Jordan Colsey + Deborah Fischer + Ofer Kantor, Erez Ezra + Avi Cohen + Boris Levin, Rachella Alcalay, Memo Akten, and more.

Also, on Tuesday, a South African multimedia artist explores the similarities between AI and an octopus. Maggie Roberts. Maggie Roberts will discuss the parallels between the operation of artificial intelligence and the somatic tendencies of the octopus as a decentralized, multi-horizon consciousness. Roberts founded the Orphan Drift collective, which cooperates with Etic Lab, developing the ISCRI project – an AI model trained on octopi. The project combines art, science, and technology, and experiments on interspecies communication between octopi and AI, with human beings as mediators. The event will be online on the TOD website.

Other livestreamed discussions will be found in Hebrew and English during New AI Imaginaries Hybrid Session No. 2. Highlights include “Artist in the Cloud: Towards an Autonomous Artist,” a talk by visionary, artist, and programmer Gene Kogan and “Artificial Life As Entanglement,” a talk by Other livestreamed discussions will be found in Hebrew and English during New AI Imaginaries Hybrid Session No. 2. Highlights include “Artist in the Cloud: Towards an Autonomous Artist,” a talk in English by US visionary, artist, and programmer Gene Kogan and “Artificial Life As Entanglement,” a talk by Feileacan McCormick of Portugal-based Entangled Others Studio on the state of entanglement and his “Hybrid Ecological Systems,” a series of studies for exposing our entangled world.

Hybrid Ecosystems’ is an ongoing series of explorations into creating an unveiling of our entangled world. Courtesy: Feileacan McCormick, Entangled Others Studio

Throughout the week, the digital arts festival will also feature a number of live performances that can also be enjoyed online. Artists include Italian artist Franz Rosati, whose audiovisual composition, Latentscape, will be shown at Hansen House with music that is part of the creation was based on music generated through machine learning and a live audiovisual performance presenting a unique collaboration between musician Or Edry and digital artist Carmi Dror that focus on lens-based art and creating digital spaces. There will also be an international performative Zoom Session at the Mazkeka pub.

An Audiovisual Night at the Tower of David Museum on Thursday, December 30th will use the Kishle complex as the setting for an immersive experience that looks at the space as a jail during the British Mandate and a time capsule of historical events. Also, Wackelkontakt, a trio that heads an audiovisual project which currently spearheads the Jerusalem experimental scene, will build a special installation of light and sound based on para-psychological experiments from the 1970s called “Ganzfeld” in German (Ganzfeld in English means “entire field.”) The Sadan Lab in the Phasael Tower will also feature local artists and DJs from Sadan Records, a Tel Aviv-based label founded to support artists focusing on contemporary electronic music and visual worlds. Most of the events taking place that night will also be livestreamed.

Wackelkontakt’s light and sound experience is one for the senses — and it will also be online. Courtesy: Wackelkontakt

The ZERO1NE festival began in 2019 and stemmed from a cooperation between the Tower of David Museum and artistic directors Moss and Zini. The digital world is growing at a rapid rate and TOD has really engaged, welcomed, and explored the digitization of history and art, becoming one of the few museums in the world to have its own innovation lab.

“Six years ago, the Tower of David Museum ventured into the world of AR and VR technologies and opened an innovation lab that would harness this energy and enhance the visitor experience,” Berliner continues. “Today, as our lives are hybrid, touched by technologies that we look to understand better, the Tower of David Museum is proud to once again give a platform to our contemporary cultural world that is being changed and shaped by new technologies and applications – whose complexities only mirror the complexities of the city which the museum explores,” said Tamar Berliner, Deputy Director, Tower of David Museum.

For more information on the ZERO1NE festival this week and its happenings, head to the Tower of David website or the site for Hansen House.

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