July – August, 2023

Made possible by Montalvo Art Center’s Lucas Artists Program and the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.


Started by Stephanie Dinkins in 2017 as meetings at NEW INC, a New York-based art and tech incubator at the New Museum, AI.Assembly is an ongoing series of intimate, exploratory encounters addressing the question “What does AI need from you?  Since the first AI.Assembly we start with that very question and then expand outward to explore more facets of the technological future. Each AI.Assembly gathering seeks to build fellowship catalyzed by sharing of meals featuring foods that are simultaneously familiar and adventurous. The project’s general aim is to make space for practice and thought around emerging technologies that have disproportionate impacts on the trajectory of society. These technologies are increasing quickly and threaten people of color with deeply embedded iterations of the discriminations and injustices we face today. Together participants consider the current state of affairs and look for, create and model ways to intercede. Past iterations of AI.Assembly have been held at New Inc, Data & Society Research Institute, Ford Foundation, and Google CodeNext.

The AI.Assembly at Montalvo’s Lucas Artists Program will be the first long-term gathering of the group. With the support of the Andy Warhol Foundation, Stephanie has gathered a group of artists to take over the residency for the next month. Together we are excited to welcome a group of interdisciplinary artists, technologists, and humanists along with a few committed allies concerned with shaping the future and working toward more fair, ethical, equitable, and inclusive technological protocols from a diversity of approaches. The convening seeks to seed intersectional thought and action around creating emerging technologies, their potential impacts, and related policy concerns.

Particular attention will be paid to these topics as they relate to disenfranchised communities participating in the creation and governance of emergent technologies poised to impact most human endeavors. AI.Assembly, therefore, seeks to foster collaboration and build a support network among practitioners engaged in this work.

Throughout the residency, participants engage in a series of activities designed to help us get to know each other on multiple levels, lay the groundwork to deepen our community and provide the starting structure for group activities, including guest facilitators.

We will also work with the resident artists to help mold assembly activities giving all involved agency in the process of co-creation.

Workshops are centered around curated meals and designed to foster collegiality and solidarity. A program of informal research sharing will be punctuated with investigations and experiments toward proactive leadership, intervention and an embodied understanding of the impacts of AI will balance out the proceedings of the experience.

Periodic workshops will gather participants to engage in debate, speculation, movement and prototyping to engage topics such as:

  • Afro -Now -ism vis a vie the Global Black Experience
  • Ancestry: Ancestral Intelligence as a tool of liberation
  • Expression: Linguistics, Language and Vernacular Lexicon
  • Extraction: AI, Capital, and Sustainability
  • Ownership: Data Sovereignty and Autonomy

They will invite approximately ten makers to take part in AI.Assembly @ Montalvo. These participants may include engineers, theorists, educators, and curators, but most participants will be practicing artists.

Watch the recent CNN interview with Stephanie Dinkins here.

Read more about Stephanie Dinkins in her TIME 100 AI article.

Supported in part by the Andy Warhol Foundation, hosted by the Lucas Artists Residency Program at Montalvo Arts Center.

Photo by Hagar Masoud.


Open Access: AI.Assembly

Thursday, August 17, 2023 (7–9pm)

Lucas Artists Residency

Organized by Montalvo's Residency Program