Ancestral Archives is a multi-medium research project at the intersection of art, technology, and Black radical thought, attempting to answer the question;
What would happen if the words of Black thought leaders were the only reference point for A.I. to understand and learn from?
This project, founded by Josie Williams, utilizes AI-powered conversational models based on the works of radical Black thought leaders and counterculture, with the intention of embedding African traditional cosmologies into Black technoculture. We then create multimedia experiences for BIPOC to engage with technologies created for us by us, and to contemplate alternative ways of being in relationship to AI.
My role in Ancestral Archives consisted of creating concept designs for the first implementation of the project; an web VR experience in which folks can interact with the AI conversational bots in a virtual environment inspired by various parts of the African diaspora. I also designed and built the launch website for Ancestral Archives, and will be spearheading a sub-project for Ancestral Archives called Digital Altars, which will explore how conversational A.I. can be implemented as spiritual technologies aiding BIPOC in ancestral ritual.