Tom White - Crimson Dream

Crimson Dream

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Crimson Dream was created as part of the Synthetic Abstractions series (2018). These works are based on abstract concepts -- such as NSFW (“not safe for work”) -- that are used as classifiers in AI-driven online content filtering systems.

The ambition is to generate images that appear as abstract for human audiences but as representational to machine vision systems. Crimson Dream confronts human viewers with visual indeterminacy and provokes the question of how the human ability to interpret image content is impacted when what we see becomes subject to the increasing power of AI tools to filter, censor, or otherwise disrupt the circulation of visual information in the digital cultural realm.

Google Vision API testing verifies that these abstract shapes are still interpretable to online pornography filters - this image continues to trigger the google SafeSearch algorithm as likely "Adult" and very likely "Racy" five years after it was created.


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Edition Type


Date of Mint

March 14, 2023

Date of Acquisition

April 23, 2023