The Wizard of AI

Alan Warburton did it again.

“The Wizard of AI,’ a 20-minute video essay about the cultural impacts of generative AI. It was produced over three weeks at the end of October 2023, one year after the release of the infamous Midjourney v4, which the artist treats as “gamechanger” for visual cultures and creative economies. According to the artist, the video itself is ‘99% AI’ and was produced using generative AI tools like Midjourney, Stable Diffusion, Runway and Pika. Yet the artist is careful to temper the hype of these new tools, or as he says, to give in to the ‘wonder-panic’ brought about by generative AI. Using creative workflows unthinkable before October 2023, he takes us on a colourful journey behind the curtain of AI – through Oz, pink slime, Kanye’s ‘Futch’ and a deep sea dredge – to explain and critique the legal, aesthetic and ethical problems engendered by AI-automated platforms. Most importantly, he focusses on the real impacts this disruptive wave of technology continues to have on artists and designers around the world.”