BeFantastic with the support of Tezos India presents a host of interactive digital artworks at the India Art Fair, which were borne out of collaborative international fellowships through the COVID-19 pandemic.
BeFantastic has been at the forefront of promoting TechArt practices in India since 2017. Our activities are directed with an urge of spreading awareness about global issues like the climate emergency, and embracing emerging technologies, particularly Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, for creative practices.
In collaboration with Tezos India, a self-upgradable, energy-efficient blockchain supported by the Tezos Foundation, we are exploring the potential of harnessing Web 3.0 towards the framing of radical market practices and the conscientious collectivisation of creative communities.
BeFantastic is honoured to be supported by
Tezos India | The British Council | Pro Helvetia New Delhi | Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan I Dara.network
Artists: Ajaibghar (India) & Uma Khardekar (India)
The act of musing has been crucial in the materialising of the anthropocentric now, and will continue to hone the ways in which humanity moulds its tomorrow. It has allowed for our memories to reach well beyond the existence of our species and will be key to extending our lifelines beyond the crises inadvertently caused by our proliferation, by helping us envision adverse futures to combat.
Prompted by the global climate emergency, museTogether is an AI-generated assemblage of eleven imaginings of our collective futures.
Human consciousness has allowed for us to create artificial collaborators whose potential for intelligence far surpasses our own, thus complementing and accentuating our musings . Let us forge ahead with a positivist belief that these new forms of sentience, along with other non-human ones, can join us in the ongoing dance to find balance with our ecosystems and help us leapfrog into a radical, open and optimistic future.
This project was developed for the BeFantastic Together Fellowship (2021). Supported by Pro Helvetia New Delhi, US Embassy Singapore & Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan
Artists: Hasan S (India), Sean Blagsvedt (India) & Archana Prasad (India)
Within half a century, computers have evolved to emulate what could only have been considered magic in years past. From a time when machines understanding human language and taking on creative tasks were merely a figment of science fiction, today these functions and more have become ever-pervasive in everyday life. While this omnipresence has begun to reveal sinister undertones, at its roots a potential for igniting radical futures, based on community-building and collective play, can also be discerned.
between.today pays homage to this potential by resurrecting the artistic language of old masters through advanced Deep Learning AI systems. It inserts its audiences into the frame of legendary artworks in a style reminiscent of the artists who created them. It is a reminder of how the past informs the present, and how technological progress continues to stand on the foundations built by our creative forebears.
This artwork debuted at Dara’s Dinner (www.dara.network) held in Bangalore India supported by the British Council.
K(not) a Conversation
Artists: Ambika Joshi (India), Nayeli Vega Vargas (Germany) & Thomas Heidtmann (Germany)
As Artificial Intelligence continues to blur the definitions of hitherto anthropocentric concepts, there is a need to scrutinise how the implications of several daily activities are framed. Quipus were devices composed from cotton or camelid fibre strings that recorded data through the organisation of knots to inform a spectrum of cultural activities in South America. Formally taking inspiration from this ancient apparatus, K(not) a Conversation instigates dialog with an AI system to examine a possible evolution of concepts such as intelligence, creativity and labour.
This project was developed during the BeFantastic Pivot Fellowship (2020) supported by the British Council & Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan
RadBot Creators: https://dara.network/RadBotCreators
Archana Prasad, Aishwarya Sultania, Arun Kumar, Arundhati Mitter, Arundhati Ghosh, Christoph Faulhaber, Marsha Bradfield, Radhapriya Gupta, Sean Blagsvedt, Shubham Roy Choudhury, Shyala Smith, Siddhartha Chatterjee, Sophia Stepf, Srijan Sandip Mandal, Swati K Sharan, Udai Pawar & Vasundhara Das.
RadBots are an NFT collection of conversational videobots created by leading playwrights, artists and screenwriters from India, Sri Lanka, the UK and Germany. This project gives voice to characters from traditionally under-represented communities, both economically and in the tech-sector, enabling them to interact with their audiences.
The RadBots project combines 2022’s most advanced artificial intelligence, authored screenplays and Dara.network’s async video-chat platform to bring fascinating Turing-test passing characters to life on anyone’s phone.
RadBots is also a radical experiment in modern collectivism and responsible crypto being supported by a Decentralised Autonomous Organisation called the RADAO, which provides a mechanism for self-organising the RadBot community, which include their creators, potential owners and the RadBots themselves. All members of the community, including its non-human actors – the bots, get the opportunity to collectively decide on the nature of the RADAO and the purview of its future activities. The RADAO’s primary responsibility is to redistribute 30% of the proceeds from RadBot sales towards different causes pertaining to social justice.
This project was supported by the Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan with partners, BeFantastic, NFTLX & Tezos India.
Artists: Arnab Chakravarty (USA), Nikita Teresa Sarkar (India), Padmanabhan J (India), Sayak Shome (India) & Uma Khardekar (India)
Year: 2021 – ongoing
Whale Tales is an ongoing project that hopes to bring attention to the role that whales play in the mitigation of climate change. It presents their stories interactively with the aid of AI-generated imagery to inspire respect and empathy towards their dwindling numbers in a manner that can captivate children and adults alike. It takes into account how engaging storytelling can have a profound effect in nurturing the sensibilities of young minds, and employs the narratives around these critically endangered species through novel formats that have the potential to sensitise people to the importance of non-human actors in our collective ecosystems.
As the project continues to develop, it hopes to innovatively incorporate relevant pedagogical approaches within its implementation to complement ongoing efforts to conserve these awe-inspiring creatures.
This project was developed under the mentorship of Harshit Agrawal during the BeFantastic Together Fellowship (2021) supported by Pro Helvetia New Delhi, US Embassy Singapore & Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan
Presented by India Art Fair in association with BeFantastic & Dara, Supported by Tezos India
At the India Art Fair | 4:00 to 4:45pm, 30th April 2022
The language of blockchains and NFTs, remains esoteric at best to the world at large. To unpack this and ease more people to make informed decisions while navigating this field, join India Art Fair in association with BeFantastic.in as they present “NFTease”
> Neural Networking
Presented by BeFantastic & Dara, Supported by Tezos India & Pro Helvetia
At the India Art Fair | Noon to 1:30pm, 30th April 2022
Neural Networking is a multi-faceted exclusive event to be held at India Art Fair consisting of a dialog between experts in emerging Techart practices, followed by a facilitated luncheon conversation between invitees on the topic of humanizing technologies like AI through art and its ability to creatively engage audiences on pressing global issues. We end with the RadBot’s Drop, a preview of conversational video bots available as NFTs and explore possibilities of owning interactive AI based techart as it encounters the art market.