The Women of the Théâtre D’opéra Spatial
Three women stand in the dressing room near the portal waiting for the performance to begin. They have used the written prompts. They have generated the image. They have presented the image to the machine. Here is what the machine gave them:
A. There is a sensation in my head and in my belly.
B. Those carvings and crenellations are unnerving.
C. The portal itself is the star of this show.
D. The machine created a landscape of dust and stone, and it's beginning to interpenetrate.
E. I can barely breathe.
F. And yet this gown... I can only call it sumptuous.
A. Why am I always the most poised?
B. Why am I always the only one in white?
C. Oh yes, it's because of the need for deep secrecy and longing.
D. I am still studying my lines.
E. And will the audience join us or will we join them?
F. The portal sucks at me like a slack wet mouth.
A. Balancing on this plinth, I wonder if a cathedral would be more satisfying.
B. Is there a god out of the machine? Are there words made flesh?
C. Theater is a well-regulated art.
D. Or is it a sport?
E. The portal is delicious, poisonous, inscrutable.
F. I am paid in golden light.
That's all. That's all the machine generated based on the women's image. That will in fact be their dialog. The machine writes their parts. The machine carves them from undifferentiated matter. The machine is no more artificial than you or I.
Jason Allen used artificial intelligence to create his digital artwork and win a state fair artist competition. Learn more about the controversy here.
Alice Whittenburg’s short fiction can be found online at Riddled with Arrows, Atlas & Alice, Eclectica Magazine, and elsewhere. Her essays appear in The Ekphrastic Review, 3:AM Magazine, The Journal of Working-Class Studies, and elsewhere. She is coeditor of The Cafe Irreal, an online magazine of irreal fiction, and of The Irreal Reader, Fiction & Essays from The Cafe Irreal. Her website is www.alicewhittenburg.com.
The Ekphrastic Review
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