For those of us who didn't major in Art History, the art world is a mysterious place that's difficult to navigate, but Sotheby's AI is aiming to make it a little easier. The famed auction house has recently acquired Thread Genius, an image-recognition and analysis firm, and it plans to apply the company's neural networks to the task of helping laypeople navigate Sotheby's massive repository of publicly available art.
Art is highly subjective. People can't typically describe the kind of art that they like, but they can identify it as soon as they see it. This is where Sotheby's AI can come in handy. Rather than struggling to describe the ineffable qualities of art, potential purchasers can simply input an image of a piece that they know they like, and the algorithm will output similar pieces from Sotheby's collection.