Inside the Innaugural Vancouver AI Community Meetup

Curiosity, Community, Creativity & Code Converge

The inaugural Vancouver AI Community Meetup, convened at the heart of Vancouver’s creative nexus, MØTLEYKRÜG Media headquarters, within the inspiring Vancouver Biennale art warehouse, was a landmark event, signaling a vibrant kickoff for a series of gatherings dedicated to the exploration of artificial intelligence in creative realms.

This sold-out event attracted a wide array of participants, from curious enthusiasts to seasoned professionals, all drawn together by a shared passion for the potential of AI to transform storytelling, art, and technology.

Through a series of engaging discussions, interactive installations, and hands-on demonstrations, the meetup fostered a rich environment for collaboration, learning, and inspiration.

Welcoming Vancouver AI Community to my new studio at Vancouver Biennale HQ.

The evening underscored the ethos of the Vancouver AI Community Meetup: to build an inclusive, engaged group focused on the real-world applications and ethical considerations of AI, setting a dynamic precedent for future gatherings and cementing its role as a cornerstone for AI exploration in Vancouver.

Vancouver AI Community Meetups bring together a wide cross section of people working with AI.

A Rallying Cry for Inclusivity and Exploration

Charlene Joseph: S?wx?wú7mesh Nation Language and Cultural teacher? ?opens with a song.

The Vancouver AI Community Meetup is founded on a principle of inclusivity. Our ethos is simple yet profound: to welcome everyone intrigued by AI’s potential. From seasoned researchers to budding artists, from tech enthusiasts to curious students, our aim is to forge a vibrant tapestry of individuals united by their passion for exploring the frontiers of artificial intelligence.

Philippe Pasquier is a professor at SFU’s School of Interactive Arts and Technology, where he directs the Metacreation Lab for Creative AI

As we plan meetups for the last week of every month throughout the year, our vision is to build an engaged, dynamic group. This community isn’t just about sharing knowledge; it’s about challenging each other, collaborating on real-world applications, and navigating the ethical labyrinth that AI presents.


Reflecting on Our First Gathering

Steve DiPaola, active as an artist and a scientist, is a professor/researcher at Simon Fraser University, Steve directs the I-Viz Lab

The night of our first meetup was electric. MØTLEYKRÜG Media’s headquarters, within the eclectic Vancouver Biennale Art Warehouse, became a crucible of creativity and innovation. The event was a kaleidoscope of insights, demonstrations, and hands-on sessions, each designed to demystify AI and showcase its transformative power in creative endeavors.


Gratitude for Our Speakers

Justine Gauthier is the Director of Corporate & Legal Affairs at Mila – Quebec Artificial Intelligence Institute.

The success of our inaugural meetup owes much to the incredible speakers who shared their insights and visions with us. Mike Klassen, Kate Armstrong, Steve Broback, Justine Gauthier, Steve Lowry, and Mirjana Prpa — each brought a unique perspective to the table, enriching our discussions and expanding our understanding of AI’s impact on society and creativity.

Kate Armstrong: Director of Living Labs at Emily Carr University of Art + Design. Co-director of AI Futures for Art + Design

Their expertise helped to set a dynamic and insightful tone for the event, fostering a fertile ground for innovation and exchange.


Celebrating Our Artists

An invocation to the Holy Mother of the Void is made; the void from which all things are born. As the future becomes the present and we forge into an age of AI art, how can we know what is human movement and what is not?

Our event was further illuminated by the contributions of pioneering AI artists who showcased interactive art installations at the forefront of avant-garde creativity. Steve DiPaola, Meehae Song, Philippe Pasquier, Arshia Sobhan, Marina Tsougrianis (AKA Orbit Princess), and Vicky Mittal — these individuals are not just artists but trailblazers, merging technology with human expression in ways that challenge our perceptions and open new dialogues.

Portrait Jordan Bent: Special thanks for making photos and videos at the event Peter Holst.

Their installations provided a tangible glimpse into the creative potential of AI, captivating attendees with a vivid display of the intersection between art and technology.


Fostering Growth and Collaboration

Old buddy Mike Klassen is a public affairs professional serving in executive leadership roles, media pundit and organizational spokesperson.

What makes the Vancouver AI Community Meetup unique is its commitment to cultivating a supportive ecosystem for experimentation and growth. As its curator, I am dedicated to building a platform where individuals from various backgrounds can share their ideas, challenge each other, and collaborate on projects that push the envelope of what’s technologically and creatively possible.

Steve Lowry, the Founding Executive Director of AInBC

Our initiative goes beyond networking. We are creating a community where the exchange of knowledge and experiences leads to real-world applications and thoughtful consideration of AI’s impact on society. Through training sessions and workshops, we aim to equip creatives with the tools they need to harness the power of AI in their work, ensuring that our community remains at the forefront of this exciting field.


The Road Ahead

Mark Busse: Strategy + Creativity + Design + Conversation = Ideas & Engagement & Community & Impact. Add good food = magic.

As we look to the future, the Vancouver AI Community Meetup is poised at the edge of a new dawn. Our collective journey is only beginning, with each meetup strengthening our resolve and enriching our discourse. We stand on the threshold of a new era where technology and human ingenuity converge, creating a tapestry of unimaginable beauty and complexity.

I extend an open invitation to you, regardless of your familiarity with AI, to join this adventure. Together, we can explore the vast expanse of artificial intelligence, learning, growing, and shaping a future where technology amplifies our creative potential.

Mirjana Prpa. Assistant Professor, Northeastern  University

For those eager to dive into this renaissance of technology and art, the Vancouver AI Community Meetup awaits. Join us as we navigate the uncharted waters of AI, forging paths where none existed, in pursuit of a future bright with promise and imbued with creativity.

Together, let’s make Vancouver a lighthouse of AI innovation and artistic exploration. Join our next meetup and become part of a community dedicated to shaping the future of artificial intelligence and beyond.

Bantering about IP, copyright and the shifting legal framework in the face of technological disruption brought on by AI and ML.

For more details on our upcoming events and how you can be a part of this exciting journey, visit our website or follow us on our social channels. Let’s embark on this path together, exploring the endless possibilities that AI and creativity hold for our world.

As we reflect on the journey of the Vancouver AI Community Meetup and look forward to the paths yet to tread, it is essential to recognize the individuals and organizations whose contributions have been the bedrock of our burgeoning community.

A special round of applause to Robert Michael Murray and Daria Yashenko. Behind the scenes, your efforts were the glue that held everything together.

Our gratitude also extends to Wayne Shadow, Kemp Edmonds, Ukrainian Sofia, Shane Gibson, Valerie Smaller, Vince Damoulin, Kevin W. Kelley and Nina Kim, Matt Astifan, Peter Holst. Each of you contributed uniquely and significantly, enriching our experience. Thanks Barrie Mowatt for believing in me.

Lastly, I must express my deepest appreciation to my advisors – Khayyam Wakil, Emma Broback, Jason Preston, Lindsay Bailey, Robert Scales, and Jessica Liang. Your guidance and wisdom and support is invaluable.

Looking forward, we’re excited to announce our next meetup scheduled for February 22nd. Expect more stimulating discussions, networking opportunities, and AI-powered creativity! Save your spot now: Next Meetup Sign-up.

Additionally, for those in Vancouver, don’t miss out on our AI Storytelling Training happening in February. It’s a unique opportunity to dive deeper into the world of AI and enhance your storytelling skills. Secure your place here: AI Storytelling Training.

Our journey together is just beginning. Let’s continue to build, learn, and innovate as a community. Your participation is what makes these events a success, and we can’t wait to see you again next month!

If you’re inspired by our work and wish to support future endeavours, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. We’re always looking for collaborators who share our vision.

Here’s to many more gatherings where AI meets creativity, technology, and community!


“I’m watching a fucking bloodbath as generative AI eats one creative industry after another….” by Vince Damoulin @streetarteagle

Leave a Reply