SRI Seminar Series presents Aaron Hertzmann (Adobe Research), “Can computers create art?”

When and Where

Wednesday, September 20, 2023 12:30 pm to 2:00 pm


Aaron Hertzmann


SRI Seminar Series welcomes Aaron Hertzmann, principal scientist at Adobe Research and an affiliate professor at the University of Washington who is an expert in computer graphics, computer vision, machine learning, and art.

In this session, Hertzmann will discuss questions of authorship raised by generative AI systems that are able to create images, enabling new modes of artistic expression. Can AI algorithms be considered artists? Will artificial intelligence reshape the ways in which we produce and understand art? Hertzmann will explore this issue in relation to previous technological developments—including oil paint, photography, and traditional computer graphics—as well as the role of art as a social phenomenon.

Talk title: “Can computers create art?”

Abstract: Can AI algorithms make art, and be considered artists? Within the past decade, the growth of new neural network algorithms has enabled exciting new art forms with considerable public interest. These tools raise recurring questions about their status as creators and their effect on the arts. In this talk, I will discuss how these developments parallel the development of previous artistic technologies, like oil paint, photography, and traditional computer graphics, with many useful analogies between past and current developments. I finally argue that art is a social phenomenon, “AI” algorithms will not have human-level intelligence in the foreseeable future, and that it is extremely unlikely that we will ever consider algorithms to be artists.

This event will be held online only.