The Meat Paradox

by Florian Maas

This series revolves around one simple question. Why do we as a society love our cat & dog companions, while at the same time pay for the killing of countless animals, who are just as capable of feelings as our pets are. This psychological contradiction is called the meat paradox. The paradox of attempting to reconcile with ourselves the fact that we say we are against animal cruelty, but pay for animals to be mutilated and killed needlessly. In the process of working with an AI called stable diffusion, I quickly realized that it has some limitations. It can only know things that it knows – so in a way, it is just like us humans. This is an interesting thought, as it shows that even an AI is ‚socialized‘ in the same way as most people. For example, giving the prompt ‚animal farming‘ it only creates images of animals on green pastures – outside, in one piece and alive. For this AI, just as for most humans, images of the reality of animal farming simply don‘t exist. They‘re not in the internet‘s main image databases (pinterest etc.) it learned from – just as they are not in the schoolbooks, films and books that we learned from when we were children. However, is it possible to train an own AI model based on images of ones own chosing – for this I showed the AI images of various investigative organizations such as we animals, that uncover the truth of what happens inside animal farms. Now it has a glimpse of a reality that was hidden from it before. This is how I was abled to create images of people, animals and places that do not exist, trying to imagine and recreate a reality that should not exist in the first place.