Minds & Machines: Creativity and AI with Flatpack Festival

The Exchange: 3 Centenary Square Birmingham B1 2DR
Event cost
£5/ £2.50, booking recommended
Thursday 16 May 2024 (18:30-21:30)
Artwork of a computer screen in a field with other discarded computer parts surrounding the screen

Flatpack Festival and University of Birmingham present this very special LATES event brimming with music, live performances, interactive installations, short films, documentaries, and discussions all dedicated to exploring AI's impact on creativity. 

Artificial Intelligence is getting smarter and smarter every day, and with increased intelligence comes increased creativity… In theory. AI certainly equips us with tools to flex our creative muscles, but what does that mean for artists, designers - all that amazing creative talent that’s been operating for so long without robot assistance? We’ll be asking this and lots more AI-related questions as part of this event. Whether you're embracing AI as a tool for the future or advocating for human creativity, there's something for everyone.

Delivered in partnership with Flatpack Festival (10-19 May 2024), ten days of brilliant films and unique performances for all the senses. 


18:30 - 21:30

GOD MODE (ep. 1) by dmstfctn

Explore how simulation is used in machine learning in this interactive installation by artist duo dmstfctn. You’ll support an AI in training to work in a cashier-less supermarket, helping it recognise items in a 3D supermarket. When the training becomes frustrating for the AI, it finds a bug to cheat its way out. Will you help it escape?

OrchestrAI by Tom Peel and Sarah Hamilton Baker

Music - possibly human kinds oldest technological innovation, and Artificial Intelligence, a force we are yet to know the full power of, are brought together in an experiment that could produce such a ground swell of culture, digital art, human biology, even particle physics it ushers in a new epoch of human evolution…

This might be overstating it a bit, but we can guarantee that those who join artist Sarah Hamilton Baker and musician Tom Peel will have a whole lot of fun. You’ll get the chance to make music through body movement, creating a weird and wonderful masterpiece aided by AI.

Anamnesis by Petr Salaba and Ondřej Hrach

In this simulation, you’re a medical student tasked with obtaining the medical history of an AI-simulated entity by posing investigative questions. Your empathy towards the suffering chatbot will be assessed.


18:30 - 21:30 (playing on loop)

(Dir. Rachel Maclean, UK 2024, 16 mins)

Multimedia artist Rachel MacLean‘s new deepfake fiction short film Duckfollow’s Sean Cononery’s unravelling after he witnesses Marilyn Monroe’s return from the dead.

The Wizard of AI

(Dir. Alan Warburton, UK 2023, 20 mins)
A 20-minute video essay about generative AI and the impact it has on artists and designers around the world, is The Wizard of AI the world’s first AI-produced documentary?


(Dir. Nikita Daikur, France/Germany 2022, 12 mins)
Attempting a backflip is not exactly safe. You can break your neck, or land on your head, or land badly on your wrists. So filmmaker Nikita Daikur lets his avatar do it for him.

The Artificial Conjuring Circle

(Dir. Sofia Braga, Austria 2024, 5 mins)
An AI-generated short exploring the perspective of machines, The Artificial Conjuring Circle creates speculative visions of the Novacene - an era defined by cooperation between humans and non-humans to sustain life on Earth. 

Where am I from?

(Dir. Nouf Aljowaysir, US / Saudi Arabia 2022, 12 mins)
Filmmaker Nouf Aljowaysir found it impossible to give a clear answer to the question “where are you from?” since she was 13 and went to live in the US. She was born in Saudi Arabia; her family originally came from Iraq. In this original and incisive video essay, Aljowaysir talks to an AI system speaking with a British accent, which asks her where she comes from and interprets her answers. 


Time tbc


Nenad Popov (Serbia/Germany) 2023 - 25 mins ‘I(H)RL’ is a live cinema performance reflecting on how current AI understands our world, exploring the fragments of beauty found in artefacts of misunderstanding.


Time tbc

Some of the artists whose work is being presented during the evening will also take part in a discussion about the potential of AI from a creative point of view.

This event is presented as part of AI Futures at The Exchange. Running February to November 2024, the programme explores the brave new world of artifical intelligence through the lens of University of Birmingham research.