Object Timeline

2019

2020

  • We acquired this object.

2022

  • You found it!

Installation, The Substitute

This is a Installation. It was designed by Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg and collaborator: The Mill. We acquired it in 2020. Its medium is software: maya, unreal engine, illustrator, aftereffects, reaper protools, blue ripple, universal audio; file type: mp4. It is a part of the Digital department.

On March 19, 2018, the last male northern white rhino, Sudan, died, bringing his subspecies to the brink of extinction. As scientists work to resurrect the rhino through experimental and controversial biotechnologies, Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg “brings back to life” a male northern white rhino using data generated by artificial intelligence to ask the question “what errors in reproduction may arise as we recreate life artificially?” Confined to a virtual room, the artificial rhino begins its life with no grid cells—specialized brain cells in mammals that help them navigate space. The rhino develops grid-cell representations as it moves around the confined space and calibrates to it, becoming increasingly intelligent. As it habituates to its environment, the rhino’s form and sound toggle from pixelated to lifelike—reminding us that this rhino, coming to life without its natural context, is entirely artificial.

Cite this object as

Installation, The Substitute; Designed by Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg (British, b. 1982); software: maya, unreal engine, illustrator, aftereffects, reaper protools, blue ripple, universal audio; file type: mp4; 2020-10-1

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If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/2318804473/ |title=Installation, The Substitute |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=19 January 2022 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>