In Simon Ingram's GAN Painting, we see the artist working in a new way with images of the ‘machine dreams’ of an artificial intelligence algorithm able to ‘grow’ synthetic images from a large library of ‘real-world’ images. These images are then interpreted by Ingram’s machine as a series of brush strokes and painted over the course of many days and nights in his Auckland studio. The distillation of these compositions as an array of polychromatic brush strokes extends work in 2019 made using a monochrome palette of mixed blacks. But if GAN Painting represents a departure for the artist, it’s not just through the use of colour. Much of his work has interpreted energy from different ‘natural’ sources as painting. For instance, Radio Painting Station - Looking for the Waterhole at ZKM Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe (DE), captured cosmic energy as painting, while Monadic Device, Sydney Contemporary (AU), captured the electrical activity of the brain as painting. But in GAN Painting, the presence of each composition’s synthetically grown image is available to the viewer in a different way - not as an ‘abstract graph’ of cosmic or cognitive energy, but as a representational image held just beyond range, in order to generate an ambiguous matrix of brush marks neither real or unreal.
*Please note, the opening event has been cancelled due to limitations on gatherings at Level 2 in Auckland.