Monday, December 2, 2013

The Future of Art and Technology

The future of art and technology is an interesting subject and impossible to broach over in a few sentences.  It is incredibly complex.  First of all, we are witnessing several aspects in the technological age.  Post-Neitszche, God is Dead.  It seems that technology is God.  Google is God (at least for now).  The Darwinists are increasingly moving towards a model of man as machine.  Postmodernism did the in Deleuze and Guattari's "desiring production" and materialist psychiatry.  Richard Dawkins refers to man as "gene machines".  Daniel Dennett's opposition to Searle's Chinese Room as a refutation of the possibility of Strong AI, points in the direction of Asimov's I Robot.  The matter is the more material we become, the more we seek out material answers to our problems.  The divorce of science and religion has its roots in the Age of Enlightenment.  Despite a few resurgences of romantic elements in art, poetry and music, the mystical has been reduced down to a "Game of Life" where automatons are the true motivators of action in time and space.

This is what I see.  Art will become irrelevant in this respect.  How or why would a machine need art?  Art is the subject that brings mankind to unknowns in ways that differ from science.  In one sense, art and science are two sides of the same coin.  But, I would say, art deals more with unknowns in terms of feelings, intuition and other things that go outside of pure reason.  For this reason, it seems that art will have no room in a world guided by materialistic principles devoid of any sense of spirituality.

If we are simply machines, creating machines which will become human like, then it appears to be one big feedback loop.  I do not see progress there, with the exception of the extension of life, if that is the end game.  Art then would be possible, if a machine can become conscious, self-aware, searching and not just automatically reproducing what has been programmed.  I do realize that we ourselves could be seen as simply acting out our destinies based on unconscious urges and not having the free will postulated by so many religions.  Either way, this is an important crux in the relationship of art and science, and important for artists to consider in this changing world.