In 1965, 17-year-old Ray Kurzweil appeared on the TV show I’ve Got a Secret to perform a short piano piece that had been composed by nascent “AI” music-software he had programmed. In her forthcoming graphic memoir, Artificial: A Love Story, cartoonist Amy Kurzweil explores her father’s ambition to deploy artificial intelligence in an attempt to “resurrect” his own father, Frederic Kurzweil, a Viennese musician who narrowly escaped the Holocaust. By delving into her father and grandfather’s histories, Kurzweil confronts questions that attend both close personal relationships and the vulnerability of mortality: How does technology change our access to the past? How much of a person can come back to life? What do we yearn for in the deceased?
06 Nov 20