Is AI Art Bad?

Vice asks “Why Is AI Art So Cringe?” (which assumes that it is, of course), with the follow-up, “just because it can be done, doesn’t mean it should be done”. The article, by Laura Pitcher, proposes that the excitement and potential of AI to solve the world’s greatest problems sparked in the 1950s has given was in 2023 to it’s being used for the computerized equivalent of cheap magic tricks, tinged with plagariaism and hypersexualization.

She criticises that there is buzz around AI-generated art despite its not having a purpose, calling it “completely soulless.” But isn’t there plenty of terrible human art as well?

AI art’s utility rests it being used to facilitate human creativity, not to replace it, some argue. Perhaps AI reminds us that it’s not just the skill of the artist that matters, it’s the human behind it, too. Art curator Lolita Cros believes the quality of AI art will improve as humans master the tool and put more thought into the ideas behind it.  Jason Allen, who faced criticism for winning Colorado State Fair’s digital art prize with AI-generated work, compared using AI generated art as being akin to channeling an otherworldly demon. Paul Hill, founder of a Gen Z art gallery, views AI image generation tools as a way to reduce time wasted by humans and to help flesh out ideas:

“The biggest benefit is using it as a tool to flesh out ideas and variations before fully leaning into something, like a physical object, all the way. I think removing people from the process of making artwork or clothing, and just solely relying on a machine, takes the art out of that creation.”