A painting created by an artificial intelligence is controversial by winning an art competition

An artist submitted several paintings created with Midjourney artificial intelligence in an art competition. One of them won the first prize, much to the chagrin of the other competitors.

An artist created controversy by winning first prize in the Colorado (United States) art competition, in the “digital art” category, at the end of August. Jason M. Allen proposed three tables produced by means of artificial intelligence, including Space Opera Theaterwho won the grand prize, indicates Vice media August 31.

The tool used to make the table is called Midjourney. This is an algorithm that allows you to create visuals from words or groups of words, a process that has become popular lately in the artificial intelligence sector.

A baroque scene

The technique, still in its infancy, sometimes gives astonishing results. This is not the case of Space Opera Theater, visually coherent and whose origin is hardly perceptible at first glance. It is a scene inspired by the Baroque style, representing three figures in ball gowns in a room. In the background, a large round gate gives a view of a city from above.

If the appreciation of the artistic qualities of the painting remains at the discretion of each one, the result of the competition itself has aroused a fairly homogeneous controversy among the participants. Most of these accused the winner of not having respected the spirit of the competition by using an unconventional method to give birth to his work – even if it is about the category of digital art.

Many Internet users also took part in the debate when Jason Allen announced his victory on Discord messaging.

“The death of the artistic profession is unfolding right before our eyes. If creative professions are not machine-proof, then even high-skilled professions risk becoming obsolete. What will we be left with? then?” worries this internet user.

weeks of work

For his part, Jason Allen defended his project, highlighting the creative process that led to the creation of these works.

“I worked on a special order, which I will post at a later date, from which I created hundreds of images, and after weeks of refining and curating, I chose my three results favorites […]“, he detailed in a publication before the announcement of the winners.

“I knew this was going to create controversy. It’s interesting how all the people on Twitter who are against AI-generated art are the first to forget that there’s a human behind this work. Is- Doesn’t that sound hypocritical to you?” said Allen on a Discord discussion dedicated to the Midjourney tool.

The artist, who had indicated “Jason M. Allen via Midjourney” on his contribution to the competition, seems to want to continue on this line. “This victory only encouraged my mission,” he said.

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A painting created by an artificial intelligence is controversial by winning an art competition


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