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Love letters
without the recipient


An artificial intelligence writing machine by the seaside inscribes lines of love letters, yet the water-written words disappear without a trace as time passes. From day to night, its writing is never completed, and the letters remain unsent. Perhaps many have swallowed their unexpressed emotions, harboring a myriad of words in their hearts but never daring to write the recipient's name or send them out.

All the text and images in the artwork are generated by AI. The ceaseless writing of the machine reflects, to some extent, the human ego. The disappearance of the words on paper carries an essence of Eastern Zen philosophy — Zen emphasizes "dependent arising and emptiness." People and things arise due to specific conditions, and when those conditions cease, they disappear. The fundamental nature of the constant flow of people and things is "impermanence," and their intrinsic quality is "emptiness." Behind the absurd repetition of this useless machine lies a reminder: there's no need to negate the sincere passion of the moment due to the impermanence of life, but it's also not worth being enslaved by desires and external circumstances, enduring unnecessary suffering. The sea may dry, the stones may crumble, everything arises from nothingness and returns to it. All things pass away, and a mountain becomes water.




Project Documentation

Love letters without the recipient

Documentary of the work

Variable size

4mins 45sec

Pictures of the work


“In the ends of the earth, only endless thoughts remain.”

Projection of love letters onto seaside rocks, inspired by the idiom "Hai ku Shi lan" (describing the enduring test of love's commitment over an immensely long period, to the point where the sea dries up, and rocks weather and decay).

Additionally, the AI video incorporates natural imagery and changing seasons. A tree symbolizes the cycles of winter, spring, wind, and rain. Blossoming unexpectedly, freely yielding results, sometimes in spring and sometimes in winter. It beckons swift winds and summons sudden showers. Wind, sea, mountain, water... As Han Bingzhe wrote, "Roaming with the wind is a unique form of dwelling, a form of friendship with finitude. People dwell and wander within the limits."

Yet, in the meandering of nature, can it dissolve the unplaceable yearning until there is neither worry nor joy, neither love nor hatred? The answer remains unknown.

“Amidst the world's fine dust, I'd rather without love or hate.”


The love letters written by AI exhibit both clumsiness and shortcomings, yet they possess elements that deeply resonate with me. For instance, my favorite line is, "Your eyes reflect the universe, where I see a moon like never before." Following closely is, "I crave the ordinary details of your life." It has already achieved a level of subtlety approaching human expression.

However, on the flip side, as non-life imitates human emotions, the contingency and transience of life become more evident. In the vast expanse of the universe, human thoughts, emotions, and attachments resemble mere dust, fleeting as travelers passing through the realms of heaven and earth.

12 love letters

Artificial intelligence generates text and images.

Translated by Ziyao Lin.

Variable size


Getting AI to write love letters is not an instantaneous process; the presented content has been selected through repeated iterations of regeneration. I asked it to rewrite these 12 letters over twenty times, often finding myself exclaiming, "No, no!" and then readjusting my requests and descriptors. For instance, it would write excessively flamboyant or deliberately literary, too straightforward or lacking in poeticism, not sounding human enough, or appearing noticeably robotic, and so on. I felt almost helpless in the process of correcting it. I even started saying, "You should be more human! Love is humble, cautious, simple, restless, and sincere..." Since the presented content didn't meet expectations, I began trying to feed it love letters collected from the internet, asking it to learn and then write. However, what it wrote ended up resembling plagiarism, just with a slight rephrasing. So, I had to impatiently exclaim, "It's learning, not copying! You need to learn and then forget these contents, generate your own expressions. Imagine you really like someone." After countless revisions, some surprisingly delightful content finally emerged. The act of teaching AI to write love letters is, in fact, absurd; humans themselves don't fully understand emotions, yet we attempt to teach an artificial intelligence language model to comprehend love.


In the interrelation of the world, one object reflects another upon itself. The writing machine continuously inscribes disappearing words, making the everyday "uniform, habitual, things that remain the same from yesterday to today, and will continue thus tomorrow." The emptiness in Zen is a silent emotion. Water writing is flowing, changing, fleeting, transient, relative, and unstable. "Emptiness" may be a letting go after attachment, or it might be a resolute commitment with the awareness of no outcome.

Working Photos


To accomplish this project, I brought my computer, camera, projector, writing machine, and power supply to the seaside. When family members asked if this was a commissioned project and if it could make money, I replied no. It was simply because I genuinely wanted to do it, and so I had to find ways to make it happen.


At the project's inception, I emailed my supervisor, asking if he could spare 5 minutes to look at this proposal lacking criticality and academic value. He replied that the idea was indeed very simple but executed well, it could be highly effective. Later, in Han Bingzhe's "Zen Philosophy," I came across the line: "The absence of profound meaning precisely creates the depth of haiku." I wondered if sometimes the simplicity and absence of meaning in a work could also create a kind of purity.


Dedicated to all those who still harbor love in their hearts.


Thanks to my master's supervisor, Daniel Rourke, for recognizing the initial proposal of this very simple and foolish project. Thanks to my friend Zhang Libaijia, who provided me with practical advice and comfort in every moment of inner struggle. Without their encouragement, I wouldn't have had the conviction to complete this excessively romantic piece of work. Additionally, thanks to my family; without their support and help, transporting and shooting the equipment for the entire coastal part of the work would have been very difficult. I appreciate their tolerance for my eccentric "useless creation."

Follow-up Invitational Exhibition


Other Fragments

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