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After Dark: Intelligence Design

A dark-haired woman looks into the eyes of Albert the robot
After Dark: Intelligence Design

Play with AI the Exploratorium way! Join Osher Fellow and creator of Microsoft’s Cozy AI Kitchen series John Maeda to learn about how design thinking intersects with artificial intelligence. Explore the new frontier of AI and art with OpenAI’s first artist in residence Alexander Reben. And don’t miss the opportunity to test out exhibit prototypes on machine learning, and chat with our exhibit developers about what they’re working on.

Cozy AI Kitchen
7:00 p.m.
Bechtel Gallery 3
With John Maeda

Come get cozy with AI! John Maeda, Vice President of Design and Artificial Intelligence at Microsoft and Exploratorium Osher Fellow, wants to bring the conversation around AI down to earth and into the kitchen. He developed an AI “cooking show” to familiarize viewers with artificial intelligence as a tool to help with everyday problems. In this version of Cozy AI Kitchen adapted just for the Exploratorium, John will be joined by museum educators to explore AI-assisted improvements to our most popular science demo, the cow eye dissection. After the demo, John will be in conversation with Exploratorium’s Principal Scientist Julie Yu about how tools like AI shape our understanding of the world.

John Maeda is an American technologist and product experience leader. He is an early catalyst for generative art and computational design for commercial applications across Web2 and Web3, and the first recipient of the White House’s National Design Award for algorithmically generated visualizations informed by data and AI. He currently serves as Vice President of Design and Artificial Intelligence at Microsoft. He’s written five books including How to Speak Machine and Laws of Simplicity.

Julie Yu, PhD is a Principal Scientist at the Exploratorium with a background in chemical engineering and molecular biology. 

Phenomenal AI
6:30–9:30 p.m.
Gallery 2: Tinkering
With Exploratorium Exhibit Developers

AI is everywhere, but how does it work really? Come play with exhibit prototypes that explore the science behind AI and machine learning. These exhibits are being developed for our 2025 summer show and your input will help us shape the exhibition. Join us to explore the connection between humans and AI and chat with members of our exhibit building team.

Speak Art into Life
6:30–9:30 p.m.
Osher Gallery 1: Human Phenomenon
With Alexander Reben

Collaborate with others and experience the human-machine feedback loop through this immersive installation. By speaking into a microphone, visitors can prompt a custom program to generate art and choose one of four results. As more and more users engage, the AI forms an amalgamation that connects everyone’s input visually and conceptually, creating an “exquisite corpse.”

Alexander Reben is an artist who has spent the last decade creating work that probes the inherently human nature of the artificial. He is currently OpenAI’s first artist in residence, and his first solo museum retrospective AI Am I? is open through April 2024 at the Crocker Art Museum. His work has been exhibited globally at institutions including Ars Electronica, MAK Contemporary Art Museum, Vitra Design Museum, Design Museum Ghent, and the Vienna Biennale.

Algorithms and Aesthetics: The Nonsensical Nuptials of AI and Artistry
8:00 p.m.
Kanbar Forum
With Alexander Reben

“Algorithms and Aesthetics: The Nonsensical Nuptials of AI and Artistry” explores the whimsical and often perplexing marriage between artificial intelligence and creative expression. This talk delves into how AI algorithms, typically rooted in logic and data, are now producing art that challenges our traditional notions of beauty and creativity. Join us on a surreal journey through landscapes of digital brushstrokes and pixelated dreams, where the boundaries of art and technology blur in the most unexpected ways.

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Alexander Reben is an artist who has spent the last decade creating work that probes the inherently human nature of the artificial. He is currently OpenAI’s first artist in residence, and his first solo museum retrospective AI Am I? ran from October 2023 through April 2024 at the Crocker Art Museum. His work has been exhibited globally at institutions including Ars Electronica, MAK Contemporary Art Museum, Vitra Design Museum, Design Museum Ghent, and the Vienna Biennale.

Food and drinks will be available for purchase at our Seaglass Restaurant and additional bar locations.