Gene Kogan

Professor at The European Graduate School / EGS


Gene Kogan is an artist and programmer. “[I]nterested in autonomous systems, collective intelligence, generative art, and computer science”[1], he has been teaching at the Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) at NYU Tisch since 2016 and, over the last decade, has held numerous talks, workshops and masterclasses on coding, machine learning, and generative art.

Kogan has participated in many exhibitions, the most recent of which include “Mind the Deep: Artificial Intelligence and Artistic Creation” (Ming Contemporary Art Museum, Shanghai, 2019); “An Eye Unruled” (Swissnex, San Francisco, 2019); “Make Believe (Why is a raven like a writing desk?)” (BOM, Birmingham, 2019); „BBGAN” (Bombay Beach Biennale, Bombay Beach, 2019); and Neural synthesis” (Tifa Working Studios, Pune, 2019; Light Year Arts, New York, 2019; Art-AI Festival, Leicester, 2019; Spektrum, Berlin, 2017; Holešovická Šachta, Prague, 2017).


Kogan’s recent installations include the series “Futurium installation“ (Futurium Berlin, 2019 – 2021); “Style Transfer Mirrors at Teknopolis “ (BAM, Brooklyn, 2020); “Doodle Tunes” (with Andreas Refsgaard; Heinz Nixdorf MuseumsForum, Paderborn, 2018-2019); “Cubist Mirror” (Centrum Nauki Kopernik, Warsaw, 2018); and „Style Transfer Mirrors @ TIFF kids“ (Toronto International Film Festival, 2018).

“[I]nterested in advancing scientific literacy through creativity and play, and building educational spaces which are as open and accessible as possible”[1] (with all of his work being free and open-source) , Kogan currently compiles the toolkit ml4a, “a collection of free educational resources devoted to machine learning for artists.”[2]

He is presently also working on Abraham, “an open project to build an autonomous artificial artist. It welcomes the participation of anyone who is interested in the idea. An eventual goal of the Abraham project is full autonomy for Abraham, which necessitates the gradual decentralization of the community. This initiative requires a diversity of talents to succeed; technical, artistic & curatorial, philosophical, and community-building roles will all be needed to develop Abraham.”[3]

As Kogan put it in an interview: “Authorship is a concept that very much predates AI and has not yet caught up. We are seeing now how limiting it is to try to assign one person or entity as the sole author to something, when AI brings in so many influences, and so many people, and so many data points. It very much fragments the notion of authorship, and certainly downstream ideas about intellectual property, copyright, and so on. No one ever asked ‘when does a paintbrush become an author of an artwork’ even though it’s a tool just the same. But the more of the creative process AI takes on, much more so than the paintbrush itself, the more obsolete the authorship idea becomes, since AI is not really a singular being like a human. We may have to invent new words to really make this clear.“[4]

Kogan currently also organizes the experimental and free Bombay Radical Artificial Humanist Media Arts Nexus (BRAHMAN), “a self-organized university with community coordination and support“[5] in the California desert.




[4] „Art and Generative Systems“, Interview with Richard Bright,