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Art Exhibitions

Autumn Leaves

1 September 2019

 Autumn Leaves is an investigation on whether the past is still present or whether it is in the process of leaving. In current global socio-political narratives, Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology has become a contributing factor to the rise of populism. The current populist narrative has resembling characteristics of the National Party’s political underpinning when it was canvassing during the 1948 elections. With the unrepresented and mostly unemployed white Afrikaner, the NP party got its backbone and seat of power. With the disruptive capacity of AI technology, a majority of people are anticipating a bleak economic outlook due to the potential the technology has on replacing their skills and know-how.
 
In the solo project AI technology was used to compile machine imaginations of Apartheid through the structural and compositional perspective of two trees. The datasets that were utilized to generate the compositions of the artworks are films that exposed the socio-political context of Apartheid and footage the artist took of an invasive tree from China, the Tree of Heaven (Ailanthus Altissima) as well as a similar-looking indigenous tree, The Forest Elder (Nuxia floribunda). The Tree of Heaven grows at a rapid pace and is perceived as a tree that reaches for heaven, whereas the Forest Elder grows at a slower rate and might grow at one meter a year in optimal conditions.
 
There is “great disorder under the Heavens and the situation is excellent.” This quote by Mao Zedong was part of the artist's process that led to the solo exhibition, Autumn Leaves as it presents the ethical implication regarding Machine Learning's capability of rewriting history on a pace previously unimaginable.
 
Bio:
 
Oliver Mayhew (1990 - ) combines his formal training in traditional printmaking mediums with his self-taught knowledge of new media mediums. He has completed his major in BA(fine arts) at University of Pretoria.
 
Mayhew explores the junctures between current technologies and traditional forms of expression. His interest lies in mitigating machine imaginations achieved through machine learning to augmented reality as "invisible" sculptures that deliver either haunting or invasive commentary in a socio-political context.

Participating: Oliver Mayhew

VENUE:

STUDIO 22
Address: 276 Fox St, Arts on Main, Johannesburg
Cell: 064 611 3135




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View details...