Screen Walk with Jake Elwes, Zizi and Me
Wednesday 7th April 18.00 BST
Drag challenges gender and explores otherness, while A.I. is often mystified as a concept and tool, and is complicit in reproducing social bias. Zizi combines these themes through a deepfake, synthesised drag identity created using machine learning. The project explores what AI can teach us about drag, and what drag can teach us about A.I.
Their most recent work 'The Zizi Show’ 2020 is a deepfake drag cabaret, a virtual online stage hosting a groundbreaking new show with a twist. It features acts that have been constructed using deepfake technology, learning how to do drag by watching a diverse group of human performers. The Zizi Show dissects one of the dominant myths about AI, the notion that 'an AI' is a thing we might mistake for a person. The Zizi Show constructs and then deconstructs a virtual cabaret that pushes the limits of what can be imagined on a digital stage.
Screen Walks is a series of live-streamed artist/researcher-led explorations of online spaces and artistic strategies designed to illuminate a thriving – often overlooked – digital cultural scene. A new online collaboration between The Photographers’ Gallery, UK and Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland. Screen Walks is kindly supported by: Pro Helvetia, Swiss Arts Council.
Jake Elwes is an artist living and working in London talking frequently on AI, art and society. His recent works have looked at machine learning and artificial intelligence research, exploring the code, philosophy and ethics behind it. In his art Jake engages with both the history and tropes of fine art and the possibilities and consequences of digital technology. He graduated from the Slade School of Fine Art in 2017 and since has been exhibited in museums and galleries internationally, including the the ZKM, Karlsruhe, Germany; TANK Museum, Shanghai; Today Art Museum, Beijing; CyFest, Venice; Edinburgh Futures Institute, UK; Zabludowicz Collection, London; Frankfurter Kunstverein, Germany; New Contemporaries 2017, UK; Ars Electronica 2017, Austria; Victoria and Albert Museum, London; LABoral Centro, Spain; Nature Morte, Delhi, India, Centre for the Future of Intelligence, UK and he has been featured on BBC4 and the ZDF.
Me The Drag Queen: This is Me...Notorious Narcissist. Glamour Clown. Professional Idiot. Once known across the world as Meth, 2020 saw the rebirth of this ridiculous drag queen as Me. She’s performed across Europe (Berlin, Helsinki, Reykjavik, Stockholm, Zagreb) and America (New York, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Austin, LA) and calls London her home. A master of lip sync with an aesthetic best viewed through a pair of sunglasses, Me is one of the top Drag artists the UK has to offer.