Exhibited on the largest LED screen that National Gallery of Victoria has deployed to date, Quantum Memories is Refik Anadol Studio’s epic scale investigation of the intersection between Google AI Quantum Supremacy experiments, machine learning, and aesthetics of probability. The work is a data sculpture that draws upon a dataset of more than two hundred million publicly available nature-related images, which are processed using quantum computing software developed by the Google AI Quantum research team in combination with a supercomputer that has been programmed with machine-learning algorithms. The resulting real-time video can be considered both as an alternate dimension of the natural world and a radical visualization of our digitized memories of nature. Its arresting visuals and accompanying audio are composed in collaboration with a generative algorithm enabled by artificial intelligence (AI) and quantum computing, a new form of computing that exploits the unusual physics of the subatomic world, and turn the visual data that flows around us into an artwork that represents our collective memory of nature. With this multisensory experience, we encourage the visitors to imagine the potential of this experimental computer technology and the immense opportunities it presents for the future of art, design, and architecture.
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Global Future Design Awards 2021
Architecture Technology Built
Refik Anadol Studio
Alex Morozov, AnalogNative, Brian Chung, Carrie He, Christian Burke, Danny Lee, Efsun Erkilic, Kerim Karaoglu, Pelin Kivrak, Ho Man Leung, Kyle McLean, Nicholas Boss, Nidhi Parsana, Raman K. Mustafa, Toby Heinemann
©Refik Anadol Studio
Technological and digital advancements of the past century could as well be defined by the humanity’s eagerness to make machines go to places that humans could not go, including the spaces inside our minds and the non-spaces of our un- or sub-conscious acts. Quantum Memories utilizes Google AI’s most cutting-edge, publicly available quantum computation research data and algorithms to explore the possibility of a parallel world. These algorithms allow us to speculate alternative modalities inside the most sophisticated computer available, and create new quantum noise-generated datasets as building blocks of these modalities. The 3D visual piece is accompanied by an audio experience that is also based on quantum noise–generated data, offering an immersive experience that further challenges the notion of mutual exclusivity. The project is both inspired by and a speculation of the Many-Worlds Interpretation in quantum physics – a theory that holds that there are many parallel worlds that exist at the same space and time as our own. Tapping into the random fluctuations of quantum noise as a unique realm of possibilities and predictions, Quantum Memories provides an interactive aesthetic experience by tracking the audience’s movements in real-time and simulating how their observer positions indeed become entangled with the visible outcomes of the ever-changing artwork.
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