Curatron is an anonymous system of peer evaluation and selection, which enables a pool of artists to select co-exhibitors from amongst a group of applicants of which they are a part of. The prize sought out by the Curatron software is the algorithm for the perfect, or at least perfectly coherent, thematic group show. With the cooperation of human artists, this may
just be achievable.
How Curatron works:
The foundation of Curatron is two-fold: firstly, it is a menu of open calls, posted by exhibition venues wishing to host and facilitate a Curatron exhibition. Secondly, it is a web-based archive of artists’ profiles, which are created as artists apply to these open calls. Each open call is specific to a venue, and has an application window of a few weeks. After applications for a specific call are closed, all the applicants are invited to participate in a selection process, in which each applicant anonymously chooses a specified number of other applicants with whom he or she would like to exhibit at the host venue.
Through a complex process of aggregation and comparison, these proposed groupings are automatically evaluated, and a final selection is made from the pool of applicants based on the most consistent selection relationships to have emerged from the peer-evaluation process. More complex than a simple voting system, Curatron “decides” on the final group of exhibiting artists based on the patterns of connection between selected artists that emerge in the peer-evaluation stage. In other words, if one artist is selected by all his or her peers, this does not guarantee participation in the exhibition. Rather, the software tests something like collective taste or sensibility by recognizing when artist groupings appear across different selection proposals.
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