Art.sy uses Machine Learning to Recommend Art

Source: NYTimes, Oct 2012

Enter Art.sy, a start-up whose public version went live on Monday. An extensive free repository of fine-art images and an online art appreciation guide, it is predicated on the idea that audiences comfortable with image-driven Web sites like Tumblr and Pinterest are now primed to spend hours browsing through canvases and sculpture on their monitors and tablets, especially with one-click help.

After two years of private testing and with millions of dollars from investors, including some celebrities in the art and technology worlds, the site aims to do for visual art what Pandora did for music and Netflix for film: become a source of discovery, pleasure and education.

The technology, at least, is expansive. To make suggestions successfully, computers must be taught expert human judgment, a process that starts with labeling: give a machine codes to tell the difference between a Renaissance portrait and a Modernist drip painting, say, and then it can sort through endless works, making comparisons and drawing connections.

 

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