Deep Feeling: AI and Emotions

Curator: Nohar Ben Asher 1.8.2019 - 28.12.2019
Inspired by video games, Ronnie Karfiol's computer animation addresses questions of morality and warfare in an era of artificial intelligence. The images of the kite and drone are familiar to us from the constant battles between Israel and Gaza, when, in the summer of 2018, the IDF intercepted kites from Gaza using drones. The kite and the drone are not strange to one another: Until the invention of the drone, the kite was used for aerial photography, especially in the early 20th century. War Assistant is an artificial intelligence entity on video. It also observes the battle from above, representing a controlling perspective, asking mankind for permission to manage its wars. The work challenges our ruling gaze and that of the machine alike.
War Assistant emphasizes the temptations of new belligerent technology, in the spirit of "pure war," to use a term coined by French philosopher Paul Virilio. "Pure war" is a war that is embedded in everyday life, such as the fighting between Israel and Gaza. It is a low-key war routine, war that survives even in times of peace, accelerating the technological development of the weapon industries.
The title of the work focuses our attention on the virtual war assistant, usually cast in a female gendered voice which is identified with empathy and compassion. Like Siri and Alexa, the assistant verbalizes inanimate objects using algorithms. Ostensibly intelligent, her interpretation is, in fact, an emotional-manipulative move which distances war by preserving a seemingly moderate battle, rendering it an autonomous enclave, much like computer game simulations. The temptation camouflages the fact that every war, as technological and intelligent as it may be, ultimately has a real impact on our lives.

Concept, writer, and director: Roni Karfiol
3D animation: Anna Isayenko – HackerU: The Computer
Studies and Career Placement Center
Post editing: Tamar Katz
Sound: Paloma Kop 

Seating is allowed and recommended