Fabrica wins IK Prize 2016

The winner of IK Prize 2016, an annual award presented by Tate in partnership with Microsoft that celebrates creative talent in the digital industry, was announced today. The winning team (Angelo Semeraro, Coralie Gourguechon and Monica Lanaro) are based at Fabrica and have been awarded the prize for RECOGNITION, an artificial intelligence computer vision project that will uncover the hidden links between current events and art from the Tate collection.

RECOGNITION will use powerful algorithms and machine learning to search through Tate’s vast digital collection and archive and news images of current events, unearthing hidden relationships between how the world has been represented in image form, in the past and present. The public will be able to watch the machine at work as it compares composition, style and subject matter, producing a stream of curated images online. In the gallery, visitors will be able to step into an installation to explore this unique virtual collection. RECOGNITION will encourage the public to look afresh at the art of the past through the lens of our world today.

The 2016 IK Prize, in partnership with Microsoft, invited digital creatives, from researchers and software developers to artists and designers, to propose a project using artificial intelligence that will explore, investigate or ‘understand’ British art from the Tate collection in a new way. The Fabrica team receive a £15,000 prize and £90,000 production budget to turn their idea into reality in collaboration with Tate and Microsoft. The winning project, RECOGNITION, will be unveiled online and at Tate Britain later this summer.

The winning team at Fabrica said:
“We were interested in how digital technology is changing perception of time and the world around us. Training a form of artificial intelligence to compare Tate’s collection and archive with contemporary photojournalism is a unique opportunity to explore how we look at the world. We can’t wait to begin working with Tate, Microsoft and a talented team of AI specialists to create this living, seeing, algorithm.”

Eric Horvitz, Technical Fellow and Director of Microsoft Research Lab at Redmond and IK Prize judge, said:
“It was an honor to be involved in judging the submissions, along with colleagues on a diverse panel of artists, curators, and technologists. We received such wonderfully creative proposals about how artificial intelligence and art might be combined. Given the burst of creativity stimulated by the challenge, it’s unfortunate that we could only select one winner for the IK Prize.”

Kerstin Mogull, Managing Director, Tate, said:
“The IK Prize celebrates creative talent in the digital industry by supporting innovative projects at the intersection of design, technology and art. By partnering with Microsoft on this year’s competition we are able to explore this new and developing field; I’m excited to see what artificial intelligence can bring to our audience’s understanding and enjoyment of the collection.”

The IK Prize, named in memory of the philanthropist Irene Kreitman, celebrates creative talent in the digital industry. Initiated in 2013 by the Porter Foundation (IK Prize 2014 and 2015), the IK Prize is presented by Tate to a team, company or individual for an original idea that uses digital technology to explore art on display at Tate Britain and on the Tate website. The 2016 competition, in partnership with Microsoft, challenged digital creatives to come up with a project using a form of artificial intelligence to explore British art in the Tate collection.

For further information, click here