From The Washington Post:
Two Rutgers computer scientists, professor Ahmed Elgammal andPhD candidate Babak Saleh, recently trained a computer to analyze over 62,000 paintings and then rank which ones are the most creative in art history. The work, which will be presented as a paper (“Quantifying Creativity in Art Networks”) at the upcomingInternational Conference on Computational Creativity (ICCC) in Park City, Utah later this month, has a number of profound implications for the way we think about human creativity.
Most notably, it means that computers could soon be able to judge how creative humans are, instead of the other way around. In this case, the researchers focused on just two parameters — originality and influence — as a measure of creativity. The most creative paintings, they theorized, should be those that were unlike any that had ever appeared before and they should have lasting value in terms of influencing other artists.
. . . .
The more that computers are able to recognize and judge creativity, the more they will be able to take on roles within the art world that once belonged solely to humans. Think about the role of the art curator at a museum or gallery, which is to select paintings that are representative of a particular style or to highlight paintings that have been particularly influential in art history.
That’s essentially what the computer algorithm from Rutgers University did — it was able to pick out specific paintings from Picasso that were his “greatest hits” within specific time periods, such as hisBlue Period (1901-1904). And it was able to isolate Picasso’s works that have been the most influential over time, such as “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon.”
. . . .
Moreover, the computer was able to perform a nifty little trick that humans can’t. As described by Elgammal and Saleh, the “Time Machine Experiment” was a unique way to compare how well certain paintings would have fared, had they been painted a few years earlier or a few years later. The idea being, of course, that moving a highly original painting back even a few years in time should significantly boost its creativity score.
. . . .
In the most futuristic scenario, computers might be able to advise on the creation of new art works. IBM, for example, has started to experiment with ways to integrate cognitive computing with different artistic endeavors. At the recent World of Watson event in New York City, the Watson supercomputer advised a human artist (Stephen Holding) on color palette and color psychology to fine-tune the design aesthetic for a huge mural painting.
Link to the rest at The Washington Post