Machines Looking at People Looking at Machines

Carl Rethmann
Project description

Can A.I replace designers?
This A.I. is trained by the most popular Pinterest boards featuring ceramic vases. It generates shapes that represent the average style popular at the time of creation. The generated vases are reproduced together with a professional ceramics manufacturer, photographed and fed back into the context they came from: Pinterest.
This project is a visual research about the influence of image-based blogging platforms in creative processes. While the number of circulating images is growing, there is still a uniform style emerging from platforms like Pinterest. This web and mobile application is at the forefront of visual A.I. research, looking for new ways to index similarities and categories with the ultimate goal of search optimisation. The impact that this has on systems of visual culture is questionable. Are we really looking for something similar or are we looking for something different?

In collaboration with FABRICA and STYLNOVE.


Carl Rethmann born 1991 in Hamburg, Germany is a visual artist working as an interaction designer. Starting as a painter he now uses computers. Rethmann investigates the relations between current technology and the constant; between cause and effect; between the user and the used. How does something that we shape influence us in return?

After graduating from the Design Academy Eindhoven in 2017, he is currently an artist in residence at FABRICA, a communication research centre based in Treviso, Italy.