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Umnai’s Angelo Dalli: Blockchain, AI will bring transparency to art world

Artificial intelligence (AI) and the power of the blockchain are helping many industries, but their combined application in the art world might be the most fascinating use case for the technologies. Angelo Dalli, co-founder of the AI development firm Umnai, joined CoinGeek.com’s Becky Liggero to discuss the flurry of creativity coming from the industry.

At the Malta Blockchain Summit, Dalli was displaying a piece of art that was created by an AI. He explained to Liggero how this was made possible:

“So we collaborated with an artist, Mark Mallia, and he painted this painting in his original style of 20 years ago, and he’s been filming his painting and teaching AI how to paint, how to create, and what we did was to re-interpret the painting, so we took this painting and re-interpreted it. And this is the result, over here. This is the re-interpretation of Mark’s painting. And it is signed Uma. We are calling her Uma for universal machine artist, and this is the end result.”

Imitation of paintings isn’t the end goal, there’s a lot of potential still left for the machines to reach for, and Dalli believes they’ll amaze us soon. “It has started to draw pictures of faces, and this is actually quite scary, because we do not know where it’s actually getting these faces from,” he explained. “So it raises a lot of questions. Is AI going to be really creative, is it going to be assisting people to get their creativity? I think the answer is yes. So we are focusing on providing commercial solutions for AI, but with a mixture of AI and business, and in creativity, I think this is the right mix.”

Considering they were at a blockchain summit, Liggero had to ask how that technology is going to mix in to help the art scene. “AI and blockchain have some applications together,” he noted. “For example, in the art world, what we’re going to do is to put the artwork itself on the blockchain, and make sure that we have a certificate of authenticity of the art…This will revolutionize the way auctions are done, pricing is done; it will bring transparency into the art world.”

Dalli being from Malta, Liggero asked him how he felt about his country’s efforts in the blockchain space. “I think that Malta has been doing a lot of things at the forefront of technology,” he responded. “I think now also, there will be AI regulation coming up next. I think that the initiatives of blockchain have already attracted a key number of major players. And I think this is good for the country… you know it’s also a nice country to do business from.”

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