Future Art Ecosystems (FAE) is a project that was launched in 2020 by Serpentine Arts Technologies dedicated to building 21st century cultural infrastructure to support art x advanced technologies (AxAT) for the public good. Initially solely an annual strategic briefing, conceptualised in collaboration with Rival Strategy, it was designed as a resource to support organisational development for AxAT.

In 2024, FAE has evolved into a holistic ecosystem-oriented project that builds on the insights gained through the strategic briefings Future Art Ecosystems 1: Art x Advanced Technologies (2020), Future Art Ecosystems 2: Art x Metaverse (2021) and Future Art Ecosystems 3: Art x Decentralised Tech (2022). The briefings led to conversations, which led to the development of partnerships to facilitate projects that are focused on key priority areas for AxAT infrastructural development. For example, a collaboration between RadicalxChange and Serpentine Arts Technologies emerged as a result of the research for and subsequent release of Future Art Ecosystems 3: Art x Decentralised Tech. The project has grown into an ongoing body of work, Beyond Cultures of Ownership, which develops discourse and platforms experiments in new ownership and distribution models, such as the stewardship technology, Partial Common Ownership.1

FAE continues to build on the knowledge and experience developed through a decade of commissioning and producing experimental AxAT projects with artists such as Gabriel Massan, Ian Cheng, Danielle Brathwaite-Shirley, Jakob Kudsk Steensen, Jenna Sutela, and Trust among many others. In this context the art field becomes a valuable space for experimentation that can have an impact on emerging systems for art, technology and society.

While each strategic briefing may represent a specific moment in the cultural technosocial context, the series as a whole represents a commitment to the development of the ideas on which it was built. This reflects the emergence of Future Art Ecosystems 4: Art x Public AI (FAE4) as both a response to the urgent issues of the current moment, and an attempt to chart a long-term vision for the cultural sector and AxAT specifically. As with each strategic briefing, FAE4 is built on landscape mapping research, roundtables and interviews with artists, cultural producers, curators, technologists, policy-makers, and legal professionals. AI has been a key area of commitment since the formation of Serpentine Arts Technologies ten years ago, initially through commissioned projects, and, eventually, the founding of the Creative AI Lab by Eva Jäger and Mercedes Bunz in 2019, a collaboration between Serpentine Arts Technologies and the Department for Digital Humanities at King’s College London. We are proud that the lab now includes Alasdair Milne, Daniel Chávez Heras, Joanna Zylinska and many more brilliant thinkers and practitioners. The Lab produces prototypes, research, and oversees a growing database of creative AI tools.2 The Lab has been a key driver in the steering and development of this briefing, and we are indebted to every collaborator for this ongoing partnership.

The core team responsible for the production of FAE4 includes Serpentine Arts Technologies (FAE4 is led and written by Victoria Ivanova and Eva Jäger, with Tamar Clarke-Brown, Tommie Introna, Lina Martin-Chan, Vi Trinh, Ruth Waters, and Kay Watson) along with co-producer and co-writer Alasdair Milne, and co-writer Gary Zhexi Zhang.

We are immensely grateful to our advisors Mercedes Bunz (King’s College London), Sebastian Berns (Queen Mary University London), Daniel Chávez Heras (King’s College London), Holly Herndon & Mat Dryhurst (Artists), Matt Prewitt (RadicalxChange), Marta Ferreira de Sá & Benedict Singleton (Rival Strategy), Reema Selhi (DACS), Katrina Sluis (The Australian National University), and Barry Threw (Gray Area), all of whom generously contributed their expertise and time to the development of this volume. We are grateful for research support from Jack Henderson and Caroline Sinders, and to all of our contributors for the conversations that have made this volume a reality.

We thank those who attended and contributed to the first Art x Public AI Workshop in June 2023 at Somerset House, a collaboration between the Creative AI Lab and the Serpentine Legal Lab (led by Alana Kushnir), where early ideas about the AI stack, governance, and regulation were shared and debated.3

We have been greatly inspired by the practices of the artists who have directly and indirectly shaped this volume through their combined artistic, intellectual, and technical expertise. In particular thanks to CROSSLUCID whose work accompanies this publication. We are immensely grateful to Holly Herndon and Mat Dryhurst as key collaborators, and for the honour of working together on R&D towards a major project at Serpentine North in Autumn 2024. It is through this project that an experimental use case for a Data Trust has been developed in collaboration with Sylvie Delacroix from the Centre for Data Futures, King’s College London.

Many thanks to Jack Murray-Brown, William Kherbek, Severin Matusek, Ralph Pritchard, James Wreford of Black Shuck, and Roxy Zeiher. Thanks to the wider Serpentine team whose support enables our projects to be truly public. We are extremely grateful to Serpentine’s Hans Ulrich Obrist, Artistic Director, and Bettina Korek, CEO, for their ongoing support, which has been integral to the evolution of Arts Technologies at Serpentine.

We would like to offer our continued gratitude to Bloomberg Philanthropies, in particular to our Chairman Michael R. Bloomberg, Patti Harris, and Jemma Read, for partnering with us on Serpentine’s Bloomberg Connects App, which enables us to extend our audience reach.

The Serpentine Council is an extraordinary group of individuals who provide ongoing and important assistance to enable us to deliver our ambitious Art, Architecture, Civic, Ecologies, Education, Live, and Technology Programmes. We are also sincerely appreciative for the support from the Corporate Members, the Americas Foundation, Patrons and Future Contemporaries of the Serpentine.

The public funding Serpentine receives from Arts Council England provides an essential contribution to our work and we are grateful for their continued support.


  1. Find out more about Beyond Cultures of Ownership and Partial Common Ownership for Art via the Future Art Ecosystems platform [link].

  2. Creative AI website [link]

  3. New Research Project: Art x Public AI (2023) [link]