Linda Dounia is a Senegalese artist whose practice is a conversation between physical and digital mediums, by way of artificial intelligence and also utilizing analog image-making tools.
Reflecting on issues of discrimination in face recognition technology and the lack of representation of non western artworks in GAN generated art, Linda Dounia brings the first large scale AI drop by an African woman. Working off her own works with acrylic painting, Dounia, who has originally caught the attention of the crypto art world as an illustrator, makes a bold move into generative art. Spannungsbogen is a series of AI generated animations which are outputs of a GAN trained with 2,000 abstract acrylic vignettes hand painted by the artist. These outputs are then arranged following an indexing system that considers form, colour, and texture. The work is inspired by the Fremen of Frank Herbert’s Dune, and the relationship of this group of people with the mighty sandworms. In Herbert’s words, spannungsbogen is ‘the self-imposed delay between desire for a thing and the act of reaching out to grasp that thing’. It’s an ode to the invisible creatures in the cracks and crevasses of the world, patiently lying in wait for their turn to freely exist. Spannungsbogen is a conversation between artist and machine, a dialectical search for meaning between a thinking mind and a feeling one, and an ode to the quietly brewing resistances within us and throughout the universe.