The Best Part of Possibilities: A.I. Advertising 

 

 

Scene-o-scope

VR Application for the Montreux Jazz Festival 

 

 

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A design research project commissioned for the GEO-DESIGN exhibition at the Van Abbe Museum.

TEXT FROM EXHIBITION CURATION

In occasion of Dutch Design Week 2018, and within the framework of its ongoing collaboration with Van Abbemuseum, Design Academy Eindhoven presents the first prototype of a new design research initiative titled GEO—DESIGN. GEO—DESIGN approaches design from an investigative perspective, proposing a new format of research into the social, economic, geographical and geopolitical forces shaping the work of designers today. It traces the global flows of production and consumption, scanning online news portals, voices from global productive markets, stories from different geographies, interpreting them as starting points for design researches to be developed remotely or in the field. 

The first episode of GEO—DESIGN seeks to trace the nebulous outlines of a company called Alibaba, possibly best known as the world’s largest virtual shopping mall. In reality Alibaba is more than just a “company”: it is at once an online platform, a chat system, a financial institution, a social network, a cloud service, a wallet, an innovation center, an educational provider, an e-commerce giant, and an almost indescribably vast logistics network that links cities, ports and factory villages across the world. Whether we recognize it or not, it is an inescapable influence on every stage of the design process today.

Starting in August, 9 multidisciplinary design researchers were invited to choose one specific aspect of interest from the given context, which would bring them to travel in the multi-faced meanings of the today design discipline. Borrowing techniques and languages from journalism, filmmaking, scenography, interaction design and other relevant disciplines, they selected, observed, collected and brought together stories, characters, places and voices into the format of a final exhibition: “Alibaba. From here to home.”

- Joseph Grima and Martina Muzi 

 

A design research project commissioned for the GEO-DESIGN exhibition at the
Van Abbe Museum.

CURATORIAL TEXT: 

In occasion of Dutch Design Week 2018, and within the framework of its ongoing collaboration with Van Abbemuseum, Design Academy Eindhoven presents the first prototype of a new design research initiative titled GEO—DESIGN. GEO—DESIGN approaches design from an investigative perspective, proposing a new format of research into the social, economic, geographical and geopolitical forces shaping the work of designers today. It traces the global flows of production and consumption, scanning online news portals, voices from global productive markets, stories from different geographies, interpreting them as starting points for design researches to be developed remotely or in the field. 

The first episode of GEO—DESIGN seeks to trace the nebulous outlines of a company called Alibaba, possibly best known as the world’s largest virtual shopping mall. Starting in August, 9 multidisciplinary design researchers were invited to choose one specific aspect of interest from the given context, which would bring them to travel in the multi-faced meanings of the today design discipline. Borrowing techniques and languages from journalism, filmmaking, scenography, interaction design and other relevant disciplines, they selected, observed, collected and brought together stories, characters, places and voices into the format of a final exhibition: “Alibaba. From here to home.”

- Joseph Grima and Martina Muzi 

360 view of the Virtual World featuring A.I. generated slogans

Animation of the VR featuring A.I. generated slogans

 

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Artist Statment:

See Exhibition Catalogue 

Over the past year, the Alibaba Group has released two new softwares which use artificial intelligence to generate advertisements. Allison Crank interviewed scientists at Alibaba’s research center to gain insight into the making of this new technology, an “AI designer” of sorts, and designed a similar tool framed around an experimental advertising campaign to sell Product “X.” The slogans are generated entirely by a recurrent neural network bot, self-named, The Best Part of Possibilities, trained on over a thousand American advertising slogans spanning the 20th and 21st centuries.

A large part of the concept revolved around creating a VR experience for public space, meaning that it needed to be immediately understandable and percievable to users with under 30 seconds as a large portion of viewers will only peek inside.

For the application, I had a custom Oculus Go stand to allow for easy handling in a public space (no need to strap on a headset). The device would turn on the application when the user approached the headset and was plugged in at all times, so museum staff didn't need to intervene with the setup.

The headset was attached to flexible pivot system that allowed users to turn the device to enjoy the 360 environment.

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Allison Crank © 2018 — VR & Interaction Designer   
Contact: info@allisoncrank.com