The Serpentine Gallery, London, is revolutionising the way the art world interacts with new technology. In collaboration with the Digital Humanities department at King’s College, the Serpentine launched Creative AI Lab, a think tank researching and investigating the impact of machine learning on art and curation. The Lab’s database shares papers, tools, online courses, and other resources.
Last week, the Serpentine published “Future Art Ecosystems 1: Art and Advanced Technologies”, a wide-ranging report surveying trends in art and tech. As the authors note, other papers in this genre have focused on the investment potential of new technologies for the art world. But this one considers new institutional models and studio practices, such as the “art stack,” a vertical structure exemplified by Tokyo-based collective teamLab, which combines experimental collaborative processes and exhibition spaces that are funded by ticketed experiences and can operate independently of art world infrastructures.
The Serpentine’s analysis of the tech industry’s growing role in patronage poses provocative questions: “what would a museum fully owned and operated by a technology company look like, and who would be its audience?” and “how can much smaller tech organizations be involved?”
It’s exciting to see an institution unpicking these issues with such clarity, intelligence, and insight.