Memo Akten

Memo Akten

Realtime image and sound synthesis and expressive manipulation using deep learning in responsive environments. (Industry placement at Google)

This research investigates how the latest developments in Machine Learning (ML) – with emphasis on Deep Learning (DL) and agent-based AI such as Monte Carlo Tree Search (MCTS) and Reinforcement Learning (RL) – can be used to generate artistic, visual and sonic outputs in realtime and interactively. Applications of the research will be demonstrated in multi-modal, virtual, augmented, mixed-reality game-like responsive environments. The research itself is not strictly a VR/AR/MR research per se, and will demonstrate these applications using current and upcoming generation consumer technologies to explore immediate or near future real world use.

The ultimate goal of this research is to create intelligent systems that enhance artistic expression. These are systems that people interact with and gesturally ‘conduct’ to expressively produce and manipulate images and sounds - in effect, collaborating with a creative agent. These systems learn – both offline and online – and have a level of autonomy that could be perceived as ‘creative’ behaviour. The experiences generated by and through these systems will be designed to operate within next-generation multi-modal virtual, augmented and mixed reality environments.

Memo Akten is an artist from Istanbul, based in London, UK. His work explores the tensions between nature, science, technology, culture, ethics, ritual, tradition and religion. Combining critical and conceptual approaches with investigations into form, movement and sound he creates data dramatizations of natural and anthropogenic processes. His primary tools include studying and working with complex systems, behaviour, algorithms and software; and he works and collaborates across many disciplines spanning video, sound, light, dance, software, online works, large-scale installations and performances. Alongside his practice, he is currently working towards a PhD at Goldsmiths University of London in artificial intelligence and artistic, expressive human-machine interaction.

Akten received the Prix Ars Electronic Golden Nica in 2013 for his collaboration with Quayola, ‘Forms’. Past exhibitions and performances include the Victoria & Albert Museum, London; Royal Opera House, London; Garage Center for Contemporary Culture, Moscow; La Gaîté lyrique, Paris; Holon Design Museum, Israel and the EYE Film Institute, Amsterdam. His work has also been featured in books, academic papers, magazines and websites such as Wallpaper*, Dazed, Eye magazine, Guardian, BBC, Financial Times, Wired and Dezeen.

Home institution: Goldsmiths

Supervisors: Dr Mick Grierson, Professor Huosheng Hu

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