Conversation with Beyond Matter artist in residence Zach Blas

On Monday, June 27th 2022 an online conversation with Zach Blas, the winner of the Residency Programme at Tallinn Art Hall, which is part of the large-scale cooperation project BEYOND MATTER – Cultural Heritage on the Verge of Virtual Reality took place. The conversation was moderated by Tallinn Art Hall curator Corina L. Apostol and artist, writer and educator Kristaps Ancāns.

The conversation centered around questions related to what lies behind our desire to create AI technologies, and why we develop AIs in human form – is it our craving to replicate ourselves or the idea of a creator or god? And in turn, what happens to bodies when they’re mediated by different technologies, media apparatuses, and other generic forms? Do we also possess artificial intelligence if, according to the Bible, we were created by god? Are we biomechanical machines, spiritual beings or intelligent animals? And if we have the tools to replicate something so well that it cannot be discerned from the real thing, can it be considered the real thing?

The conversation is part of the large-scale cooperation project BEYOND MATTER – Cultural Heritage on the Verge of Virtual Reality, co-funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union and German Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media.