Nigerian artist uses AI to show the bright side of old age


By AGENCY

An image by Nigerian artist Afegbua, created with the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI), shows an elderly model walking on a runway, as part of his 'Elders' series. Photo: Reuters

A Nigerian artist is using artificial intelligence to reimagine life for African elderly people by showcasing near real-life pictures and videos of them walking down the fashion ramp and on the beach.

Malik Afegbua, who is also a filmmaker, said because many elderly people were marginalised in society, especially in the fashion world, he began to imagine how they would look if they were models.

Afegbua started posting some of his work on social media and it went viral.

He came up with “Elders" series, a catalogue of pictures and videos showing white-haired women and bearded men strutting the runway for a virtual fashion show in Afrocentric attire, including ornamental neck and arm bands.

“So I wanted to ... imagine the elderly people in a place that is not either in a sad space or in a suppressed state,” said Afegbua.

“However, when I was making it, I kind of knew there was something there. I was like this is dope. I’m loving what I’m seeing.”

Afegbua was not always an artist. He studied business in university but stepped into the world of filming after a friend bought him a camera in 2011.

He said the idea to explore a different world for old people came when his elderly mother fell ill. Using an artificial intelligence app, he started creating content showing a brighter side of old age. – Reuters


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