Philipp Schmitt

Why Would You Want To Picture It

Sound Installation and Sculpture. 4 channels, 8:00min. Painted steel, 3m x 1m.

A sculpture of a neural network diagram floats in the gallery, taken from a research paper and rendered ten feet long in painted steel. It is oscillating ever so slightly, making it hard to discern whether it is spatial at all. The room is filled by a synthetic voice recounting the experience of being a vector inside a neural network, the composition of the landscapes, its rules and poetry.

The piece offers an experience of the disconnect between what can be observed, reasoned with, communicated, and that which emerges from within artificial neural networks invisibly and un-imaginably: their “intelligence”. It asks to what extent the world can be modeled through mathematics, and conversely, whether we can understand these models. Can we understand what we cannot observe or imagine?