A book about the work of Manfred Mohr : Art Must Be Artificial: Perspectives of AI in the Visual Arts


This book will be available from February 2024. As the presence of AI and digital tools is growing in our lives, the computer has become a new medium of expression for the artist. This art technique is also a language. Art Must Be Artificial: Perspectives of AI in the Visual Arts presents the historical and current art practices of leading international and Saudi artists using computer technology, spanning from the 1960s until today. This exhibition aims to question the nature and aspects of the most accomplished computational and robotic artworks through the historic perspective of the pioneers of computer art. With a majority of artworks from the Guy & Myriam Ullens Foundation’s comprehensive computing art collection, the exhibition includes more than thirty artists from fifteen countries, representing four generations of this innovative, creative practice. Organized by the Saudi Ministry of Culture and presented at the soon-to-open Diriyah Art Futures in Riyadh, the inaugural exhibition is curated by Jerome Neutres, a leading expert in the field who theorized the concept of “Computing art” and has been examining most of the participating artists’ work for more than twenty years. The exhibition focuses on how the pioneers of yesterday and the emerging figures of today are depicting a meaningful history of the evolution of the homo digitalis, the new human civilization. It aims to demonstrate that digital technology is a true medium of art, opening infinite visual possibilities, rather than an experimental school or a fad art movement. The exhibition highlights some of the specificities of this new art medium: how it has placed the viewer at the heart of the artistic experience, how it presents the dream of an unlimited artwork, close to an organic creation-it is art with a nervous system. In our algorithmic era, technology and art inspire each other. Artists are perhaps the best mediators to question the complex and numerous issues of this new world. Because imagination is an artificial reality, art must be artificial.