Curator: Alexandru I. Berceanu (RO)
Define Sentience explores the impact of technological advancement on human emotions and social interactions. The project is the result of research conducted at the International Center for Research and Education in Innovative Creative Technologies (CINETic) in Bucharest. CINETic’s mission is to develop knowledge and to innovate at the international level in the fields of performing arts and film, as well as in the fields that lead to their growth and transformation. The knowledge acquired in theatre and film is expanded through research within interdisciplinary projects that bring together art, science and technology.
When it comes to robots and AI, techno-skepticism and dystopian discourses have been at the forefront of popular culture for the past decades. Hollywood movies embody the public fear of artificial machines taking over the world and exterminating humans (or at least humans as we know them). This project joins the debate on sentient machines and how they fit in today’s context and social order. Machines becoming sentient may lead to the necessity of including them in the category of personhood where members enjoy rights, freedoms and protection under the law. This leads to an ethical discussion regarding the development of sentient machines. Is humanity holding back on acknowledging emotions in machines in order to keep this new species at a subordinate level? The attempt to engineer consciousness might help humanity gain deeper insight into the background of this phenomenon.
Overview of projects
Dorin Cucicov (MD)
Sentientia attempts to reconstruct the experience of a sentient creature that learns to interact with the external world. Inspired by Dr. Frankenstein’s creature, Sentientia sends audio signals to its environment and waits for a response to establish an emotional connection. Emotional combinations are generated by the machine and transformed into sound. Once the system understands that it has a mind and is conscious of its surroundings, will it start looking for entities like itself to create social networks of emotional intelligence?
I Am Here
Dorin Cucicov (MD)
I Am Here is an interactive experience powered by human interaction. An ambiguous digital presence invites you to an exploratory dialogue. How well can you understand the entity and its intentions? Does the movement influence the digital form, or does the form dictate your movements? I Am Here explores the possibilities of outsourcing human personality to digital forms. It attempts to blur the differences between interhuman and human-computer interaction.
- CINETic International Center for Research and Education in Innovative Creative Technologies), Proiect B
Alexandru I. Berceanu (RO) is a theatre director, researcher and cultural manager. He is the director of CINETic of UNATC IL Caragiale, a Centre focused on digital interaction research and development. Based on his interested in extending performative space through digital augmentation, he participated in projects that focus on art, technology and science: Subversive and Submersible Installation 1958-1958, Mikey on Danube Graphic Novel or VR project Touch. His work is centered around deconstructing violence and discrimination and the consequences of politics at a personal level.