Every now and then, the android Data from Star Trek. Next Generation TV series has to prove his as-close-to-human-as-possible qualities, by experiencing and being able to show emotions. The ultimate challenge in this endeavor is to perform these emotions through forms of art, which is still, 30 years after the film was created, a test used to verify the sophistication of artificial intelligence. I extracted a scene from one episode where Data has already the knowledge of the principles that define art and tries to explain them to his “daughter”, an android that is still in the state of equalizing all objects with which she comes in contact. Living in a country where the profession of artist is not very much valued (and most people’s reaction to art is similar to Data’s daughter, stepping away from it with indifference), I am often paying attention to how artists are represented in films and popular media, most often in stereotypical ways. In this particular scene I selected here, I found interesting also the choice of painting through which Data wants to explain the mastery of this art: a painting by Mondrian, one of the masters of abstract art.
The work is part of a larger series inspired by Star Trek