Exploring Creative Artificial Intelligence

June 01, 2019

From the industrial revolution to the digital one, the ability to invent and use machines to automate tasks is a defining part of being human. In recent years, artificial intelligence (AI) and data-driven Machine Learning (ML) methods have been successful at automating a growing number of complex tasks in ways that outperform humans. But, can machines help us be creative or create by themselves for us?

Creative AI is the emerging field concerned with the use of AI and machine learning for the partial or complete automation of creative tasks. As a new field, Creative AI explores a number of intriguing questions:

  • Can we understand and model human creativity?
  • Can we discover creative processes that humans are not capable of?
  • Can we generate interactive experiences and content tailored to a given user at a given time and over time?
  • Can we challenge social and cultural ideas of AI through the making of artworks?

Creative AI is one of the fast-growing areas in emerging technology and offers new ways to empower people with that allow them to create better, faster, or differently. For example, if you are tired of clicking on buttons and menus one-by-one to get the results you want, then Creative AI systems might be for you.

For the last ten years, the Metacreation Lab has been at the forefront of research and practice in Creative AI.  Research in the Metacreation Lab explores how various creative tasks can be automated and enriched. These tasks include music composition, sound design, video editing, audio/visual effect generation, 3D animation, choreography, and video games design.

SIAT PhD candidate Kivanc Tatar, Remy Siu and Philippe Pasquier are playing live with the musical AI MASOM (Musical Agent based on Self Organized Maps) at the MUTEK Festival. This musical agent, based on neural networks, learns what type of sounds human use and how they sequence them by listening to a wide variety of music from dead composers, hence the name of the project: REVIVE (

The Metacreation Lab has also developed creative applications in collaboration with companies such as Gener8, Ableton, or Teenage Engineering. These new applications have been used in performances and interactive artworks shown in prominent art museums, and festivals, including the National congress building of Romania, the Bolshoi theatre in Moscow (Russia), Ars Electronica (Austria), and the Olympic Games Cultural Program in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil).

More about the Metacreation Lab:

More about Musical Metacreation (the international workshop):

Photos credit: Ashley Gesner, 2018.