AI image synthesis models such as Dall-E, Midjourney, and Stable Diffusion are nostalgic by design: Turned into training data, the visual culture of the past has become an exploitable resource for the production of endless amounts of future synthetic images. In the latent spaces of these models, every possible image appears as an interpolation of already existing images, filling a gap in the archive, supplementing and completing it, and yet remaining completely dependent. The talk explores this nostalgic impulse of current AI image synthesis and asks for its cultural and aesthetic implications.
This KISDtalk can be joined in room 11 or online via Zoom.
is a media and visual culture scholar specializing in the history and theory of networked image cultures. His most recent book, Gesichtserkennung (Wagenbach 2021), explores the cultural and social implications of automated facial recognition. His current research focuses on AI image synthesis, virtual image archives, navigable images, and the media archaeology of augmented spaces. Roland is currently a researcher in the CRC “Virtual Lifeworlds” at the Ruhr-University Bochum and lives in Berlin.