Tarot and Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a revolution set to impact our lives and every imaginative art, including the world of dreams, Tarot and Tarology.

We are only at the beginning of this revolution, and like any powerful innovation, it is difficult to glimpse its potential and risks. Artificial intelligence, it is true, could lead to a depletion of the ability to imagine. If AI becomes too advanced, there could be a risk that artists will rely too much on it to generate artistic ideas and solutions, rather than develop their own creative abilities. This could lead to the production of standardized works of art that lack originality.

Another risk is the misuse of AI in imaginative art, as AI can generate high-quality images and models with relative ease, effectively creating a saturation of original and surprising artworks.

Tarot cards drawn by AI

But what does AI have to do with the Tarot?

I don’t go so much into how AI could, for example, be used to analyze large amounts of data on Tarot readings and identify patterns and correlations that might not be obvious to human readers; or how AI could be trained to read the Tarot and provide at least “plausible” interpretations for hasty consultants on the hunt for pre-packaged, soulless answers without the magic of intuition.

What strikes me is how Artificial Intelligence can be used to develop new tarot cards, based on machine learning algorithms. For example, the Swedish artist Supercomposite has created new Tarot cards based on Artificial Intelligence, I mean, Arcana that do not currently exist but replicate the imaginary layout of the Tarot.

On the other hand, I enjoyed another kind of experiment: starting with a sketch and a short textual description, I used Artificial Intelligence to reproduce the Major Arcana known to us. I propose them in this roundup. Here is the result!

Tarot and Artificial Intelligence: my experiment

The first experiment I did is based on the Empress. Here is the rudimentary starting sketch:

Tarot and Artificial Intelligence
The starting sketch for the Empress

I used the following description to feed the AI: “A crowned Empress holding a scepter and shield with an eagle on it.”

And here is the surprising result:

The Empress Tarot card generated by AI
The Empress Tarot card generated by AI

Here is a second experiment, this time starring the Tower. This is my initial sketch, accompanied by the description “lightning generated by a solar disk strikes a tower and men fall from it.”

My sketch for the Tower Tarot Card to feed the Artificial Intelligence
My sketch for the Tower Tarot Card

This is the result of the Artificial Intelligence-produced Maison Dieu, rather eerie but very dreamlike:

Tower Tarot Card generated by AI
Tower Tarot Card generated by AI

Finally, my own version of The Force:

The Tarot Force produced by Artificial Intelligence
The Force Tarot card produced by Artificial Intelligence

In conclusion, it is still too early to grasp the full implications of this technological revolution: history teaches that any innovation can benefit mankind to the extent that it is not abused and, above all, when it stimulates the irreplaceable human imagination and intuition.

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