To Dream, to Collect

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Fondazione Prada does never leave us with a dry mouth. After the incredible success achieved with the exhibition dedicated to the master Jannis Kounellis in Ca’ Corner della Regina (Venice); now the two Milan spaces are ready to start the fall season with another tribute to the great art of all times!

Discover more about the latest exhibition at Fondazione Prada: The Baroque vision of Luc Tuymans at Fondazione Prada  - Venice 2019 | Prada Vs Pinault  - JOHN BOCK: THE NEXT QUASI-COMPLEX

OSSERVATORIO | Fondazione Prada 

Titled "Training Humans", the new exhibition displayed at Osservatorio Fondazione Prada (located at the core of the city in Galleria Vittorio Emanuele), present itself as the first major photography exhibition devoted to training images: the collections of photos used by scientists to train artificial intelligence (AI) systems how to “see” and categorize the world. Curated by Kate Crawford, published researcher and professor, and Trevor Paglen, artist and researcher at Osservatorio, from 12 September 2019 to 24 February 2020, the exhibition will reveal the evolution of training image sets from the 1960s to today.

The project curatorship desires to highlight how the private and public sectors are harvesting people’s online photographs as raw material for human classification and surveillance. The project questions the present status of the image in artificial intelligence and algorithmic systems, from education and healthcare to military surveillance, from law enforcement and hiring to the criminal justice system. “Training Humans” explores two fundamental issues in particular: how humans are represented, interpreted and codified through training datasets, and how technological systems harvest, label and use this material. As the classifications of humans by AI systems becomes more invasive and complex, their biases and politics become apparent. Within computer vision and AI systems, forms of measurement easily – but surreptitiously – turn into moral judgments.

 

Exhibition view of Kate Crawford | Trevor Paglen: "Training Humans". Osservatorio Fondazione Prada. Photo Marco Cappelletti.
Courtesy Fondazione Prada

 

As stated by Trevor Paglen: “When we first started conceptualizing this exhibition over two years ago, we wanted to tell a story about the history of images used to ‘recognize’ humans in computer vision and AI systems. We weren't interested in either the hyped, marketing version of AI nor the tales of dystopian robot futures.” Kate Crawford observed, “We wanted to engage directly the images that train AI systems, and to take those images seriously as a part of a rapidly evolving culture. They represent the new vernacular photography that drives machine vision. To see how this works, we analyzed hundreds of training sets to understand how these ‘engines of seeing’ operate.”

Fondazione Prada 

An exhibition transformed into a journey at the discovery of wonderful treasures from the past! Curated by the film director Wes Anderson and the writer Human Malouf, the exhibition "Il sarcofago di Spitzmaus e altri tesori" (Spitzmaus Mummy in a Coffin and Other Treasures) venue from 20 September 2019 to 13 January 2020, literally wants to bring visitors into the exploration of 537 artworks from the top worldwide museum collections. Organized in collaboration with the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna the exhibition will present works from 12 collections of the Kunsthistorisches Museum (the Egyptian and Near Eastern Collection, the Colle lion of Greek and Roman Antiquities, the Pictures Gallery, the Museum of Ethnology, the Theatre Museum, the Collection of Historic Musical Instruments, the Imperial Armory, the Imperial Carriage Museum, the Kunstkammer, the Coin Collection, the Library, and the Collections of Ambras Castle) and from 11 departments of the Nuturhistorisches Museum in Vienna.

 

"Il sarcofago di Spitzmaus e altri tesori" (Spitzmaus Mummy in a Coffin and Other Treasures). Courtesy Fondazione Prada

 

The twin museums, inaugurated in 1891, are among the leading cultural institutions in Austria and Europe. The former houses over four million works collected by the Habsburg family and subsequently the Republic of Austria, since the 13th and 14th centuries. The latter is one of the largest natural history museum in the world, including over 20 million objects. The project explores a long time span from 3.000 BC, the date attributed to the oldest object in the exhibition - a bracelet with Egyptian faience beads from the Kunsthistorisches Museum, to 2018, the year of the three emu eggs from the Nuturhistorisches Museum. 

"Il sarcofago di Spitzmaus e altri tesori" (Spitzmaus Mummy in a Coffin and Other Treasures) intends to explore the reasons behind the decision to create a collection and the ways in which it is housed, presented and experienced. Looking back to the past and drawing inspiration on the model of the Wunderkammer, the exhibition challenges traditional museum canons, proposing new relation between the institution and their collections, and between their professional figures and their public. The selection includes Coffin of a Spitzmaus, an Egyptian wooden box with a mummified shrew from the 4th century BC which the exhibition is titled after, and its also important put in evidence that this exhibition was organized before (in a small version) for the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna. 

Cover image: Exhibition view of Kate Crawford | Trevor Paglen: "Training Humans". Osservatorio Fondazione Prada. SELFIE DATASET, Mahdi M Kalayeh, Misrak Seifu, Wesna Lalanne, Mubarak Shaha, 2015. Photo Marco Cappelletti. Courtesy Fondazione Prada

 

Stay Tuned on Kooness magazine for more exciting news from the art world. 

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