brian lee dae yung on Thu, 17 Feb 2005 04:50:18 +0100 (CET)

[Date Prev] [Date Next] [Thread Prev] [Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: <nettime> Introducing Daria: An autonomous software artist


Thanks for replying to my post. I've taken the liberty to CC-ing the list, as I
think this discussion raises interesting points.

It's a good question why Daria is a "she"? The short answer is that it follows a
long line of precedence of men naming and referring to their machines as
female. To a certain extent, this female-biased gender association is less
apparent in computers (particularly large networks), in which computers are
named for cities, stars, mountains, or people. It is possible though, that the
moment we anthropomorphize the computer, we associate a gender, but I don'thave
data one way or the other to back up such a claim.

Software on the computer is a different story. For an autonomous software system
that by design is to be anthropomorphized, it seemed prudent to impart a gender
to the system. Hence, I chose to follow the precedence I was familiar with.

With regards to the work she creates, the female form has often been used and
interpreted within works of art, far more often than the male body. It makes
sense to maintain this convention, considering the point/concept of the work
(creating and releasing Daria) is to explore the possibilities of autonomous
systems interacting with humans and integrating into their society, as opposed
to the gender bias of her work. I'm not suggesting that it isn't a valid
question, because it is. However, I think that the first issue needs to be
raised (can autonomous systems integrate into human society? can we consider
autonomous software agents as artists?) prior to questioning the validity of
their work. If not, then we have already accepted the software as being a valid
artist without going through the process of debate.

Where I veer from convention is by creating a solid delineation between Daria
and me. Other artists create machines that create art and the question has been
raised whether it is the machine or the creator that creates the art? The
resounding answer has been that it is ultimately the creator of the machine
that creates the art. But what if that isn't the case? I think it raises a
number of important questions about identity, ownership, and society that will
become increasingly more important as fields such as artificial intelligence
and biotechnology continue to advance.


Quoting "Dan S. Wang" <>:

> What makes Daria a "she?" Does it have something to do with all the collaged
> naked female breasts in her art works? Could we say that her governing
> algorithm is gendered?
> dsw
> > This may be of interest to those involved with new media, generative art,
> > autonomous systems, and/or matrix-style paranoia.

brian lee dae yung
biomimetic art and research
  mux space . com

This message was sent using IMP, the Internet Messaging Program.

#  distributed via <nettime>: no commercial use without permission
#  <nettime> is a moderated mailing list for net criticism,
#  collaborative text filtering and cultural politics of the nets
#  more info: and "info nettime-l" in the msg body
#  archive: contact: