Updated: Oct 6, 2021
At BIOS, we wanted a brand that reflected our vision and work. We apply data to a messy, biological problem. But the results of that can be surprisingly beautiful.
We use a blend of AI, the body, and neural interfaces, and yet we want a future in which we improve people’s quality of life through our work. We want to create a technology not for its own sake, but for future patients.
Ultimately, we also wanted to create a brand that would scale-up with us for the future as we become a global company.
To achieve all of these things we worked with the London-based branding agency Ragged Edge. Designer Matt Smith and his team did an incredible job to mix the technical and aspirational elements of who we are.
Berlin-based artist Nicholas Andreas Fischer was brought onto the project to create art out of BIOS’s large neural datasets gathered from pre-clinical trials. Fischer took the data, and with his AI models created one-of-a-kind, one time only work of art. He took BIOS’s IT4 dataset which shows the neural data of an orthostatic drop, or when a subject stands up, to create movement and dynamism in the piece.
BIOS’s unique data-inspired artwork is now a major piece of our branding, and encapsulates what we have been aiming for - a reflection of our technology combined with the meaning and vision behind it. There are still images as well as a 40-second moving image that can be seen on our website.
Below is a Q&A with the artist to learn more about his work and what it meant to him.
Why did you first decide to create art using AI?
I saw the first solo exhibition of Casey Reas in 2005 in Berlin which inspired me to take up programming. My background is a more traditional one coming from drawing, painting and printmaking, but the possibilities I saw in that type of work were so promising that I taught myself how to program my own software to make art.
Why do you think AI makes a good basis for your art?
All generative models can serve as a powerful extension of your capabilities as an artist. You are not limited to what you can do by hand - instead you can create models vastly more complex than what you could do by yourself.
How do you decide how to present a set of data as a piece of art?
I usually do some very basic visualisation as graphs and charts to try to see patterns emerge, which I can then focus on for the work. This varies from data set to data set and depends on a variety of factors. I try to find something that makes sense conceptually as well. Since digital material is malleable I can theoretically map any data source to any parameter, but that would be arbitrary, which is what I am trying to avoid.
What techniques did you use to create this piece?
The images and video were created with the data bios provided from one of their sensors, which I then fed into the generative system, which I have been developing over the past 10 years. The system in itself has a low level decision making ability, which is only reined in by the rules (algorithm) I defined. I cannot fully control its outcome and every time the software is being run it creates a unique set of images, which never repeat themselves.
What excited you about BIOS and the data you used for this project?
I have been interested in the idea of fusing technology and humans for a long time, having been an avid reader of science fiction novels from an early age.