Often, people assume that robots are unable to “think” and thus cannot be creative. They believe robots might help a human create art, perhaps, but would not be able to create a marketable piece of artwork on its own.
This, however, is only part of the story. Artificial Intelligence does help humans create art, but it can do more than just help. It can create its own art too! AI has made inroads into drawing, music, and poetry. While such AI driven machines often require human intervention, the art they produce is original and completely computer generated. Even though we have neither made a robot that has passed the Turing Test nor invented a machine that is by and large considered “intelligent,” we have made robots that express creativity, using innate knowledge and judgment to make new artwork on paper, in words, and in music.
Robot art will probably not surpass human art anytime soon, but the fact that machines are able to create art at all moves us another step closer to building robots that act human and possess true Artificial Intelligence. In the meantime, we can listen to new symphonies created in the exact style of their long-dead mentors or see what kind of poem would result from a collaboration of Edgar Alan Poe, William Carlos Williams, and T.S. Eliot. Failing that, we could enjoy the art created by AARON, the cybernetic artist that has been creating artwork displayed in prominent art museums since the 1970’s.