Gray Area hosts a special event celebrating the US publication of Pharmako-AI, published by Ignota Books. Join K Allado-McDowell, Refik Anadol, Dorothy R. Santos and Elvia Wilk to launch the first book to be co-created with the emergent AI GPT-3.
In this event, Refik Anadol and K Allado-McDowell present a performance of machine hallucinations, floating heads and sound, followed by a conversation with Dorothy R. Santos and Elvia Wilk.
During the first summer of the coronavirus pandemic, K Allado-McDowell out of curiosity fed a diary entry to GPT-3. This was the beginning of a remarkable conversation that unfolded into a labyrinthine exploration of memory, language and the nature of the universe.
In the isolation of lockdown, Allado-McDowell wrote to the AI in a trance-like state over the course of a fortnight. As the author and the machine rapidly became mirrors of each other, age-old questions about human existence became a lived experience for the interlocutors. What is the nature of human consciousness? How and why did we invent language? How is reality constructed? Pharmako-AI is a hallucinatory journey into selfhood, ecology and intelligence via cyberpunk, ancestry and the Californian dream.
Through a writing process akin to musical improvisation, Allado-McDowell and GPT-3 together offer a fractal poetics of AI and a glimpse into the future of literature. Pharmako-AI reimagines cybernetics for a world facing multiple crises, with profound implications for how we see ourselves, nature and technology in the 21st century.
Image credits: Refik Anadol, Machine Hallucinations : Nature, 2020. Latent Space Study of 68,986,479 million images.