Oxia Palus/Tony Tran
New Blue Period

Scientists Use AI, 3D Printing to Uncover Hidden Picasso Painting

byTony Tran
Oct 17
Oxia Palus/Tony Tran

Here's what it looks like.

Fine Art(ificial Intelligence)

Despite dying 48 years ago, Pablo Picasso is still dropping art. Such is the case with a “new” painting scientists discovered beneath the surface of a painting using AI. 

Oxia Palus, a company dedicated to finding lost art, uncovered the piece titled “The Lonesome Crouching Nude,” according to a statement obtained by CNN. The portrait was painted over by Picasso when he created “The Blind Man’s Meal” in 1903 — a common practice at the time to save money on canvases. 

Painting Picasso

To uncover the painting, scientists first used x-ray imaging to find the portrait’s outline. Then they used trained AI to add Picasso-style brushstrokes to fill in the image.

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Finally, they gave the painting texture using a generated heightmap before 3D printing it onto a canvas. The result: a nude portrait from Picasso’s famed “Blue Period.”

Masterpiece Resurrection

While incredible, this does bring up ethical questions. After all, the technology can create a close facsimile to what dead artists might have intended… but it’ll never be exactly right.

So, is it okay to even try to bring back “lost art” if it’s not what the artist might have wanted in the first place? Ty Murphy, Picasso expert at art due-diligence firm Domos Art Advisors, thinks so. 

“History has shown us that people will always emulate the work of other artists,” Murphy said to CNN. “It’s an exploration of Picasso’s mind.”

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READ MORE: Hidden Picasso nude revealed and brought to life with artificial intelligence [CNN]

More on 3D printing: New Tech Cooks and 3D Prints Chicken Simultaneously


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