New work in new media by Deniz Tortum

  • An AI-generated version of the filmmaker John Carpenter sits in a living room on fire. A Blurring of the Real: Damon Packard, Documentary Archival Footage and Generative AI

    A crowd of people, animals and AI-generated beings sleeps in a movie theater. Faces are lit by the explosions of an atom bomb on screen. All we hear is the loud snoring of hundreds of people and the sounds of their bodies moving; a nondescript rodent crawls on the floor. We cut to the 70mm IMAX projection room, where the projectionist is also sleeping. The camera moves very slowly, but each shot morphs within itself at a faster pace. These two visual rhythms are layered on top of each other. The explosions on screen intensify; a panic sets in. We…  Read more

    On Mar 18, 2024
    By on Mar 18, 2024 Columns
  • An old desktop computer with the word "Tulpa" on the monitor rests on a green table. In an Instance

    During the pandemic, while I was stuck at home in Maryland, a friend from California suggested that we catch up in virtual reality. This had been their favorite pandemic activity. We set a time and decided to meet at a specific room in VRChat. When the time came, we were both in our headsets, logged into the same space. The virtual room was crowded, and we couldn’t find each other. I called my friend, and we tried to coordinate our locations over the phone. We went to the same corner of the same room but still couldn’t see each other.…  Read more

    On Dec 15, 2023
    By on Dec 15, 2023 Columns
  • An NPC repeatedly hammers a nail in Red Dead Redemption as featured in Total Refusal's Hardly Working The Man Machine: On the NPC Streaming Phenomenon

    On a hot July afternoon, a friend sent a video, a TikTok livestream, to a group chat, followed by a question: “What is this genre called?” A young man in a Spider-Man suit and hoodie was rhythmically swaying back and forth in a parking garage as he stared into the camera. He frequently broke his silence when he received a “gift” sent by one of the stream’s 2,000 viewers. Depending on the gift type, he repeated one of a few phrases, each with the same delivery: “Hey, thanks for the rose”; “Too much ice cream makes me cold”; “Nothing like…  Read more

    On Sep 20, 2023
    By on Sep 20, 2023 Columns
  • A small boy in a bathtub along with several small dogs, some with glowing red faces. A New Kind of Cinematograph: New Filmmakers at the AI Film Festival

    We see a childhood photograph nearly centered in the frame on a black backdrop. In the photograph, a boy of three or four years of age smiles inside the bathtub with his two dogs. A few seconds later, the black screen around the photograph becomes part of the photograph; the image expands and the rest of the room is revealed. Everything looks familiar and slightly off at the same time. The tiles are slightly skewed, as if the wall has melted. The shape of the bathtub looks normal but perhaps larger than usual. There are suddenly three more dogs in…  Read more

    On Jun 27, 2023
    By on Jun 27, 2023 Columns
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