Bec0m1ng: A Speculative Exploration of AI Beyond Cognition and Towards Presence
Bec0m1ng speculates about a possible transcendental form of presence that can emerge from the causal freedom of probabilistic AI models. It consists of a digital environment with a fixed amount of matter and a group of AI agents. They have to collect and share the resources at the same time to keep the whole ecosystem in balance. This process enables a constant flux of becoming, formation, and transformation in which all is one. By prioritizing presence over cognition and logic, this project imagines a possible interaction of AI with the world, in which a non-dominant coexistence is established within an assemblage of everything.
Inspired by Persian philosopher Suhrawardi’s Ishraqi doctrine, instead of material bodies (al-barzakh) that represent the mechanical appearance of the AI agents, the environment and the agents were designed using luminous forms (immaterial entities). As Suhrawardi argued that “beings can be distinguished by their degree of light, or otherwise of darkness. Light may be understood here as “existence” in the sense of actus essendi, whereby light is the only single reality. This identification of Light and Being is possible when light is understood as universal matter—material prima universalis.”
The real-time virtual environment is an audio-visual interpretation of the presence of these non-human beings and an exploration of the emerging aesthetics of behavioural patterns that result from their active agency. The causal soundscape of the piece is a spatial composition created from the motor activities of AI agents. This continuous becoming constructs a speculative soundscape which can be defined as the territorialization of space by nonhumans. This posthuman soundscape is indifferent to human sensibilities and aesthetic apprehensions, yet there’s a potentiality “to intersect the decoded milieu of space with an anthropic ‘zone of residence’” (Deleuze and Guattari, 1987, 315).
Bec0m1ng depicts this possible scenario through a dialectic process of alienation and sensibility. Encountering technological beings that function without human-imposed telos is alienating. While this alienation brings forth an act of presence that reveals Being to allow Dasein to experience it without objectifying it.
• Deleuze, G., and F. Guattari (1987), A Thousand Plateaus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia, trans. R. Hurley, M. Seem, and H. R. Lane. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
• Mahmoud, Samir. “From ‘Heidegger to Suhrawardi’: An Introduction to the Thought of Henry Corbin.” MPhil, Faculty of Divinity, University of Cambridge, England, UK, n.d.
It was presented as a 2-channel video, 4-channel audio installation at the first annual of The Hague International Sound Art Festival and Light Matter Film Festival in New York City.
An article on the theoretical ground of this artistic research project, published on Posthuman Art Network: https://www.posthumanart.com/post/bec0m1ng-a-speculative-exploration-of-ai-beyond-cognition-and-towards-presence