To Be Human : for solo tenor, electric guitar and string orchestra
by Lior and Ade Vincent (2023)
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Why does art hold a reverence for humans? And what happens to if we outsource its creation? When experiencing art, there has always been an assumption that human experience was at the core of the creation. With the advent of Artificial Intelligence-created art, we're now asking ourselves whether experiencing an AI artwork is as satisfying or interesting to us as experiencing a human-produced artwork. Our first instinct is often no, but it's hard to give an account of why.
One way towards some clarity and understanding is to experience this question through a specific artwork. To Be Human explores that which is missing in AI art: human effort and emotion over time. Not only is AI- art not made by humans, it's made in an instant. Can it be called it a 'work' when no work has gone into it? The hidden journey of the artist's creative process has always provided meaning to the experience of art, beyond the end product in isolation. To Be Human lays bare what this process looks like, and crucially, what it feels like to the artist. When this piece of music is heard, the listener is put in touch with not just the product, but also the procedures that are missing from AI-created art.
To Be Human is a song cycle in seven parts, examining the experience and emotions of artists throughout the creation of a work of art:
1. The Promise:
2. Descent: trepidation
3. Cages: unworthiness
4. Out of the Circle: possibility, escapism
5. Broken Arrows: frustration
6. The Bends: fear
7. Carry Us Above: joy
More specifically, this work holds a mirror up to our own experience as we created it, providing a diary in musical form as the process unfolded.
- Ade Vincent and Lior, 2023
Instrumentation: Solo tenor voice, electric guitar, string orchestra (at least 18.104.22.168.1)
Duration: 28 min.
Contents note: I. The Promise: searching -- II. Descent: trepidation -- III. Cages: unworthiness -- IV. Out of the Circle: possibility, escapism -- V. Broken Arrows: frustration -- VI. The Bends: fear -- VII. Carry Us Above: joy.
Commission note: Commissioned by Melbourne Chamber Orchestra.
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