Natasha is an artist and multidisciplinary creative based in London. She is interested in the way which digital technology interfaces with nostalgia, something she began exploring in her Central St Martins BA Fashion Final collection. During her time at the RCA, inspired by the Surrealist and Dada movements of the early 20th century Natasha has made an Artificial Intelligence (AI) program that replicates her own creative process. The creative output of the AI is expressed through digital collages that create surreal interior landscapes that match objects and spaces together based on written descriptions. She works with found wooden and metal domestic objects transforming the objects into visual monuments to the life they have experienced. Her work has been featured in Vogue Italia, Evening Standard and 1 Granary. Natasha is a recipient of the Anne Tyrrell Design Award Scholarship.
In an evolution of the serendipitous Dada technique of cutting up random words from a newspaper putting them in a hat and pulling them out to create a poem. My work updates this process so that the hat and newspaper are replaced by an Artificial Intelligence.
In his 1924 manifesto of surrealism André Breton called for a uniting of the transparent world of conscious mind with that of the nebulous domain of dreams and the subconscious.
‘I believe in the future resolution of these two states, dream and reality, which are seemingly so contradictory, into a kind of absolute reality, a kind of surreality, if one may so speak’.
Today, breakthroughs in the design of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in combination with advances in neuroscience are causing us to revise our notions of reality. It becomes increasingly clear the fusion between dream and reality he had called for has already taken place. We are beginning to understand that the unconscious has an indisputable influence over our thought processes at all times of the day and that human intelligence cannot be equated with rationality as once thought. ‘Absolute reality or surreality’ may be simply, reality.
In the DADA works of the early 20th century it was the combination of pure serendipity and their systems of making that revealed glimpses in the absurd links of the subconscious mind of an individual person.
This was the motivation behind creating an AI that would act as a tool to help me document the complex data and unconscious associative patterns that makes up an individual. A perspective which sits at odds with the way that AI currently leans towards an assumption of a singular truth. Neural networks are trained against an often-homogenous dataset with error functions until we perceive them as being ‘correct’. But what do we perceive as correct? How can we ever create meaningful AI art when we generalise cultural data in AI? What perspectives will be lost if we do not explore this further?
In my work an AI becomes a kind of self-portrait that acts as a preserved fragmented distillation of a person. However, it is a portrait in which the portrayed has been removed from the frame, leaving diorama of the subconscious mind to be played out by the surreal collided object fossils left behind. In this way the AI becomes a vehicle to reincarnate the mind of a person at a particular time through creating endlessly evolving nostalgic art based on data they have provided. This art-based data is expressed through digital collages both 2D and 3D that create surreal interior landscapes that match objects and spaces together based on how I describe them in a set of word-based descriptions. I then materialise this newly ordered reality by wooden domestic objects and use CNC milling technology to subtract reliefs of the AI objects that transform the objects into visual monuments to the life they have experienced.