Praise for the body art of Camille Utterback, and commentary on controls.
18.response.1. Stelarc's Exoskeleton. Cyborg Frictions, Dampfzentrale, Bern, 24 November to 1 December, 1999. (Photo Dominik Landwehr, permission Stelarc)
For artists working with extensions of biological functions, in order to express metaphors, they have to work literally, attaching themselves to or ingesting devices. Stelarc comments:
It is time to question whether a bipedal, breathing body with binocular vision and a 1400cc brain is an adequate biological form. It cannot cope with the quantity, complexity and quality of information it has accumulated; it is intimidated by the precision, speed and power of technology and it is biologically ill-equipped to cope with its new extraterrestrial environment.
Stelarc's work transcends the model of "prosthetic" when it turns in on itself and interiorizes the computing process and its products into the body. In Ping Body/Proto-Parasite, this kind of reversal occurs:
...the cyborged body enters a symbiotic/parasitic relationship with information. Images gathered from the Internet are mapped onto the body and, driven by a muscle stimulation system, the body becomes a reactive node in an extended virtual nervous system [which] extends the body's optical and operational parameters beyond its cyborg augmentation of third arm, muscle stimulators and computerised audio visual elements.
...The body, consuming and consumed by the information stream, becomes enmeshed within an extended symbolic and cyborg system mapped and moved by its search prosthetics... [via] sensors, electrodes and transducers on its legs, arms and head that triggered sampled body signals and sounds and that also made the body a video switcher and mixer [Stelarc].
The Stelarc web site at http://www.stelarc.va.com.au/
Fantastic Voyage, 1966 - Studio/distributor: Fox
* Stephen Boyd
* Raquel Welch
* Edmond O'Brien
* Richard Fleischer
The Early Video Project - http://davidsonsfiles.org/LesLevineInterviewPart1.html. Les Levine Interview by Davidson Gigliotti. Recorded: December 9, 1999.