Relationship between Body and Technology in the Works of Orlan and Stelarc Dissertation

Relationship between Body system and Technology in the Functions of Orlan and Stelarc

Explore the relationship between your body and technology in the work of Orlan and Stelarc

A performer is essentially composed of two entities: the self and the representation of the self. The body is the physical manifestation of the represented self and is interpreted by the viewer depending on it is gender, age group, colour, charm, adornment and perceived problems (these perceptions often getting culture-bound while well). In addition to this, the musician uses cosmetic makeup products and costume, and connections with the performance space to affect the meaning. For primary of a functionality space, what better place to start with than this kind of powerful physical signifier?

In performance, there is a tendency to perceive the actor plus the body like a very independent entity for the concrete, technical elements of the stage. Orlan and Stelarc, contemporary efficiency artists, obstacle this understanding - Mcclellan (1994, para. 14) describes them as " the post-human Hersker and Eve", suggesting that they can be heralding within a new ‘breed' of artist, inextricably relevant to, and even produced by, technology. This undoubtedly reflects the role with the body and technology in current Western society -- medical technology can produce life in vitro and, defying mother nature, can alter the intrinsic genetic makeup, and internet technology can allow a person to project a fabricated disembodied persona on the ‘net' to interact with others more than vast distances. Orlan and Stelarc take hold of technological integration as a requirement to their function – the questions lay in what it implies to the self if the method by which it is showed (the body) is improved.

In incorporating aspects of strength and durational performance skill, Orlan offered the change of her own body system in the operative theatre. ‘The Reincarnation of Saint Orlan' is her most well-known piece of work, begun in 1990. Yet , she do begin performing in the 1960s the moment, even in that case, she proven a subversive attitude towards body. In 1964 the lady used her own body system as " a unit of measurement (‘Orlan-corps')" to evaluate public buildings (Flande [ed. ], ‘Biography', www.orlan.net). This project continued into the late 1972s. The reduction of her body into a tool of measurement was your less serious forerunner for the reduction than it as a fabric in ‘The Reincarnation of Saint Orlan'. In both equally pieces, the lady objectifies her body, in ‘The Reincarnation of St . Orlan', the implications upon herself and her audiences are far more controversial.

A surgical book defines ideal beauty as "[that] of any white female whose face is flawlessly symmetrical in-line and profile" (Balsamo mentioned in Auslander, 1997, s. 129). Ethnocentric definitions similar to this one without doubt affect the manner in which beauty is usually idealised in fine art. These kinds of idealisations had been the motivation for 'The Reincarnation of Saint Orlan'. The task was a group of officially eight surgical businesses, undertaken together with the intention of altering regions of Orlan's human body to replicate those of well-known images of female natural beauty including Renaissance works such as Da Vinci's ‘Mona Lisa' and Botticellis' ‘The Birthday of Venus'. In the self-consciously ironic attempt to recreate perfect natural beauty, Orlan becomes a American canon of images against itself and effectively undermines it.

Orlan herself describes her are " Carnal Art – [that which] is self-portraiture in the traditional sense but made by way of today's technology" (www.orlan.net). Orlan suggests that, simply by undergoing surgical treatment, she is building a work of art which can be ‘classical' in this it presents an idealised aesthetic; yet , she uses herself as the organic material. Cosmetic surgeons operate on her body and face while Orlan is under a neighborhood anaesthetic. Her mundane activities of reclining and browsing a book (see appendix one particular: ‘Fourth Surgery-Performance') are performative in that they may be deliberated to develop juxtaposition with her mutilated body. The group would expect...