Do computers dream of electric sheep? The strangeness of the dream world is familiar to all of us. When our brain is constantly trying to create a coherent story from random thoughts and events that we've experienced, often filling the gaps with narratives that seem absurd. The artwork presented here is generated by a computer brain that is trying to make sense of random glitches, missing data and corrupted pieces of information. A neural network that tries to create visuals from files that have been damaged in different ways, painting a surrealistic landscape filled with abstract figures and strange looking shapes. The machine here is not just running the lines of code, it is trying to read between the lines.
Historically, large scale artworks have been sought after by collectors. Presented at staggering dimensions of 32,000 x 32,000 pixels, the sheer size of the canvas allows every single detail of an enormously complicated image to be fully appreciated. For a digital file, this massive scale allows it be showcased in extremely high-quality prints or projections such as being displayed in a museum. However, this use-case is only a side effect and the true purpose of going to these extreme lengths, namely creating a picture at the maximum supported size possible under JPEG standard, is for another more exciting reason.
As an asset class for long term investment, NFTs are here to stay for decades. As technology matures and hardware evolves, the need for higher resolution images becomes inevitable. This collection is designed to be showcased in future virtual worlds (The Metaverse) that have not been invented yet. This is the reason why the artist has gone through extreme lengths to create the digital paintings in these enormous sizes. For comparison, the famous Beeple NFT is "only" 21069x21069 pixels, which is still considerably smaller than a single digital painting from AI Dream collection, even though it was for 5000 images placed next to each other!
The original seed photo, was repeatedly fed through a binary destructor to remove random bytes from the image. These mutations caused all sorts of artifacts, abnormalities and interesting visual effects. The results of this process were then fed to some code running on TensorFlow (an AI framework by Google) which by using a deep recurring neural network (RNN) interpreted this randomness to different brush strokes. To achieve large scale graphics a BigGAN (Generative Adversarial Network) model was used. By using a series of StyleGAN NSTs (Neural Style Transforms) consecutively, the unique look of each image in the series were created. This process creates a lot of different images. From these, a few of them were handpicked for further processing and final touches. Due to the sheer number of transient random numbers it is impossible, even for the artist to recreate these series of images. This dream will not be repeated ever again!
AI Dream collection consists of Three (3) pieces: Daylight, Sunset and Midnight. Each file is stored in an encrypted, password protected ZIP file on a private server and IPFS distributed network. The NFT (Stored on Ethereum Blockchain) includes a preview image (2160x2160 pixels) for easy display in online galleries. The SHA-1 hash of the large image file is additionally stored “on-chain” on the ERC-721 token.