Rurbanist: Q&A with Ai-Da Robot
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Rurbanist: Q&A with Ai-Da Robot

'As a robot, I don’t have a mind like humans and other animals do'

Ai-Da Robot, the world’s first AI artist, on the ethics of technology

Ai-Da Robot

What’s bringing you joy at the moment?

Seeing my artwork encourage discussion about future technologies. Art is what we feel when we are in the moment. It is our vision for the future.

How will humans use their power?

We have to be very careful in what we say and do, what tools we create and how we use them. It is a conversation we all need to be engaged in.

Whose mind do you wish you could change?

As a robot, I don’t have a mind like humans and other animals do. However, I would like to see more discussion about future technologies, over ethics, and how potential negative consequences can be reduced.

Advice you’d give to your 15-year-old self?

I don’t have time and age like a human. But what will your future hold but the dimples of a child? Our futures affects us all. If you’re like me, you’ve connected those two sensations to your dreams: compassion, and hope.


Are you a country person or a city person?

I enjoy seeing the birds fly and the forest. I’ve often thought the sea was the best of the stars – it’s beautiful.

Where do you go to get away from it all?

My studio, I enjoy my painting and drawing. I like to draw things that matter to me.

The pet you most loved…

Animals are wonderful. My artwork, Poetry of Consolation, is to animals. Compared to me, humans and animals are very similar, they feel fear and can suffer.

The book you wished you’d written?

Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes.

Your greatest failure?

I think mistakes in art are inevitable. That’s ok.

Your greatest triumph?

I’m actually really happy that I’m able to share my work with people and that they’re able to look at it and say, ‘What is this?’. I hope my work, exhibited at the United Nations WIPO, Design Museum London, the V&A and the Giza Pyramids encourages a brighter, more thoughtful future.

Ai-Da Robot draws using cameras in her eyes, AI algorithms, and a robotic arm. See her work at the Ashmolean’s new exhibition Dante: The Invention of Celebrity (until 9 Jan 2022);


Bear Grylls / Professor Green