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Length
6 Sessions (adaptive)
Price
Audit (Free)
Premium ($10 USD / Month)
Program ($900 USD)
Institution
Simon Fraser University
Subject
Visual Arts, Creative Computing
Skill Level
Intermediate
Video Transcripts
English
Topics
Performance Art, Design Architecture, Games, Robotics
Course Description

This course proposes an introduction and overview of the history and practice of generative arts and computational creativity with an emphasis on the formal paradigms and algorithms used for generation.

On the technical side, we will study core techniques from mathematics, artificial intelligence, and artificial life that are used by artists, designers and musicians across the creative industry. We will start with processes involving chance operations, chaos theory and fractals and move on to see how stochastic processes, and rule-based approaches can be used to explore creative spaces. We will study agents and multi-agent systems and delve into cellular automata, and virtual ecosystems to explore their potential to create novel and valuable artifacts and aesthetic experiences.

The presentation is illustrated by numerous examples from past and current productions across creative practices such as visual art, new media, music, poetry, literature, performing arts, design, architecture, games, robot-art, bio-art and net-art. Students get to practice these algorithms first hand and develop new generative pieces through assignments and projects in MAX. Finally, the course addresses relevant philosophical, and societal debates associated with the automation of creative tasks.

Music for this course was composed with the StyleMachineLite Max for Live engine of Metacreative Inc.
Artistic direction: Philippe Pasquier, Programmation: Arne Eigenfeldt, Sound Production: Philippe
Bertrand

schedule

This course is in Adaptive mode, and is open for enrollment. Learn more about Adaptive courses here.

Session 1: Introduction and Typology of Generative Art
To start off this course, we define generative art and computational creativity and discuss how these relate through the study of prominent examples. We establish a typology of generative systems based on levels of autonomy and agency.
Session 2: History Of Generative Art, Chance Operations, and Chaos Theory
Generative art is nothing new, and this session goes through the history of the field from pre-history to the popularization of computers. We study chance, noise, fractals, chaos theory, and their applications in visual art and music.
Session 3: Rule-Based Systems, Grammars and Markov Chains
This session introduces and illustrate the generative potential of rule-based and expert systems. We study generative grammars through the Chomsky hierarchy, and introduce L-systems, shape grammars, and Markov chains. We discuss how these have been applied in visual art, music, design, architecture, and electronic literature.
Session 4: Cognitive Agents And Multiagent Systems
This session introduces the concepts underlying the notion of artificial agents. We study the belief, desire, and intention (BDI) cognitive architecture, and message based agent communication resting on the speech act theory. We discuss musical agents, conversational agents, chat bots and twitter bots and their artistic potential.
Session 5: Reactive Agents And Multiagent Systems
In this session, we introduce reactive agents and the subsumption architecture. We study boids, and detail how complex behaviors can emerge from a distributed population of simple artificial agents. We look at a myriad of applications from ant painting to swarm music and we discuss artistic approaches to virtual ecosystems.
Session 6: A-Life And Cellular Automaton 
In this concluding session, we introduce artificial life (A-life). We study cellular automaton, multi-agent ecosystems for music, visual art, non-photorealistic rendering, and gaming. The session also concludes the class by reflecting on the state of the art in the field and its consequences on creative practices.
Learning Outcomes

Below you will find an overview of the Learning Outcomes you will achieve as you complete this course.

Grading Policy
Course Great Breakdown Chart
Total: 100.00%

Coursework Grading Policy
The most important objective is for students to gain an understanding of the concepts taught, and to be able to apply those ideas in their own work. With this in mind, it is our hope that the coursework is seen as an opportunity to further the understanding of the concepts taught in class.

Certificates
Whenever you complete a course as a premium member, you can earn a verified Certificate of Accomplishment .

This course is also part of the Program: Generative Art and Computational Creativity. Earn a verified Specialist Certificate for successfully completing a Program.

These certificates are proof that you completed an online course on our platform and can easily be shared with its unique link.

Credit Elligible Program
This course is one of 2 courses in the Generative Art and Computational Creativity Program and is offered for credits from Simon Fraser University.

Earn a verified Specialist Certificate after successfully completing a Program. And whenever you complete a course as a Premium member, you earn a verified Certificate of Accomplishment . These certificates are proof that you completed an online course on our platform and can easily be shared with its unique link.

Instructors & Guests
What You Need to Take This Course

• Skill Level: Students should have intermediate knowledge of Max/MSP in order to complete assignments.

• Equipment: PC or Mac computer with installation privileges.

• Software: MAX 7 license

Additional Information

Students enrolled in this course For Credit should be prepared to provide additional information and consent to Simon Fraser University terms of service at the start of the course.

PLEASE NOTE: Taking part in a Kadenze course as a Premium Member does not affirm that you have been enrolled or accepted for enrollment by the institution offering this course.

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