by Robyn Cook, Sekyeong Kwon
Machine learning is set to have a profound impact on the graphic design industry in the near future. Despite its proximity, graphic design education and practice are largely sidelined from participating in the highly scientized spheres of computational aesthetics and applied image processing. Within this context, designer Sekyeong Kwon sought to make visible some of the cultural and practical implications of AI-powered design, from a graphic design perspective. The resulting practice-led project, Michael Barnes, falls within the subfield of adversarial design, and seeks to provoke contestation and debate around automation in design. The following short paper briefly sketches out the current graphic design landscape in relation to emerging technologies; outlines Michael Barnes; and explores a number of issues raised by the project including questions around (inter alia) aesthetics, authorship, and representation.