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2022
Streaming Stillness 虚极静笃
 

Inspired by the concept of Yugong, which represents the earliest geographical imagination and contemplation in China, Streaming Stillness reshapes the Chinese topography using artificial intelligence to map in a way that creates a fresh geographic origin for modern Chinese civilization.

 

Over the past year, starting from the Helan Mountains, various components of Streaming Stillness were trained using StyleGAN, Pix2Pix, and MIDAS to obtain diverse information. The creation is grounded in extensive real data of Chinese topography, where the system synchronously trains the three-dimensional results generated by AI after deep learning on Chinese topography and the two-dimensional outcomes derived from AI's deep learning on traditional Chinese ink paintings.

 

The production of this artwork involves both the sculpting of the mountainous structure and the creation of digital imagery. Ultimately, the results are projected onto the surface of a 21 meter-long sculpture using eight projectors. A historically significant brick-walled space is transformed into an immersive and poetic realm, with the voids in historical space filled by floating motion images generated by AI.

 

Through the AI's translation of topography, Streaming Stillness exhibits different perspectives on civilization and diverse individuals' desires for imagination. Each person possesses their unique viewpoint which leads them down speculative paths related to civilization. The domain of this artwork, rich in the unknown, yet sensorially vivid, is essentially a virtual creation. It originates from the real world but does not exist within it. It exists beyond human experience, yet reaches towards a transcendent natural prototype. In Streaming Stillness, virtual no longer points to nothingness; instead, it approaches reality and disrupts it, providing the potential to reveal the unseen truth, or, perhaps, to "know the essence while embracing the virtual" (Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching). 

Artwork by Jiayu Liu

Artist Assistant:

Haobo Huang

Technical Director:

Louis Mustill

Content Design Director:

William Young

Content Technical Director

Xin Fang

Motion Graphic Design:

Tiankun Yu

 

Houdini Technician:

Zhaoxue Xiang

 

VFX:

Jiakun Sun

 

Machine Learning Technician:

Qihui Wang

 

Machine Learning R&D:

Aijia Wang, Ashiely Zhang

 

Surface Redesign:

Xiangyu Wang

 

Sculpture Redesign:

Bochen Zhang

 

Fabrication Director:

Junxia Zhang

 

Prototype Fabrication:

Nian Xiao, Weizhen Bai

 

Sculpture Fabrication:

Zhenfeng Ding, Jiajun Ding

 

Projection Director:

Junwei Yuan

 

Mapping Technician:

Chao Yuan

 

Film:

Mark Winterlin

 

Edit:

Matthew Watt

 

Project manager:

Tingting Wu

Special thanks

 

Qingxue Liu, Shujuan Ma, Chao Lu

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