“On the white canvases covering the wooden structure of a cellar room (of approximately 10 square meters), I repeatedly wrote in Chinese '我要真普選' (I want real universal suffrage) with willow charcoal made in China.
This slogan has been used widely in Hong Kong during the Umbrella Movement and represents the people's demand for freedom and democracy. I travelled to Venice when the major occupy site outside Central Government Offices was about to be cleared by police in Hong Kong. A programme of selected video documentaries of or work by artists in Hong Kong themed ‘Performing Civil Struggles: in-between conformity and resistance in Hong Kong (2004-2014)’, curated by me for the VIPAW (Venice International Performance Art Week), was showing in the next room.
As an active participant in the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, my installation/performance manifested not only my confessions of being away, but also my solidarity with other protesters at home, and an intense meditation on a series of civil struggles in decades.
In my live performance on 15 December 2014, when the last major occupy site was being cleared in Causeway Bay, I blindfolded myself with the 5-star flag of PRC and repeatedly wrote the same slogan again on the canvas.
Messy, scribbled or uncontrolled, the blind writing layered the canvases with my mixed feelings about the civil struggles in Hong Kong: devoted and persistent yet vulnerable, isolated or even imprisoned by one's own promise.
On 18 December 2014, the 6th day of the 2nd VIPAW (Venice International Performance Art Week), I presented a tele-performance through webcasting from Hong Kong. I lind-walked around the Central Government Offices at midnight when there was almost nobody there. After my emotional outbreaks during my performance in Venice, this blind walking took me back to the locale of the protests in the past few months and where the Umbrella Movement originated.
The remoteness of my performance as shown by live-feed video projection on my recurring writings of ‘我要真普選’ (I want real universal suffrage) in Venice corresponded to the emptiness and solitude of the place which had been occupied in the past 3 months and cleared a week ago.
This action also offered me a chance to meditate on the unseen future of the civil struggles in Hong Kong and re-discover the overlooked micro-history on a personal level.”
Metamors is a colorful vortex that transports the observer to a dreamlike dance between the veil of being and the abyss of becoming. Each mask is an echo, a shard of stars and stories woven into the threads of the female soul's polyhedral mosaic.
The artist, the Sibyl of a Thousand Faces, wears masks that speak the names of deities, warriors, witches, and dreamers in this hallucinogenic garden of fluid lights and shifting shadows. But be cautious! The masks are dishonest artificers who play with our perception of reality. They are gateways into digital realms, worlds of pixels and code, places where being a woman is a kaleidoscope of unlimited possibilities.
This is a performance where the body's trajectory, velocity and position/orientation in space were choreographed by a 6-degree-of-freedom industrial robot arm operating within a 3m diameter task envelope. The resulting sound of the robot motors registers the kind of movement, acoustically amplifying the choreography.
The programming was done offline and then transferred to the robot controller. The performance was done with one of the programmers having his thumb on the kill switch, in case the robot did something unexpectedly. The body and the robot become one interactive and aesthetic operational and performing system. When the choreography was completed, the body was replaced by a large sculpture of his ear. The robot that choreographs the ear is the same robot that carved it.
Performance: 29 September, 2015
DeMonstrable exhibition: 3 October - 5 December 2015
This is an interactive, online performance that explores the physiological and aesthetic experience of a fragmented, distributed, de-synchronized, distracted and involuntary body – wired and under surveillance. Wearing a heads-up display, the artist sees with the eyes of someone in London, and hears with the ears of someone in New York, whilst simultaneously, anyone, anywhere can program the exoskeleton with a touch-screen interface and generate involuntary movements of his right arm.
The performance was for 5 days, 6 hours a day continuously. His vision was disconnected from his hearing and his arm was disconnected from his intention. It is as if the body has been electronically dismembered, spatially distributed and possessed by multiple agencies.
The performance was from 3 -7 August, with the exoskeleton arm being interactive from 31 July – 4 September 2015.
EAR ON ARM SUSPENSION is a performance where the body is suspended above a 4m long sculpture. 16 hooks were inserted along the back of the torso, arms and legs to equally distribute the body’s weight. As it was winched up, the body assumed its full weight, stretching its skin.
Because of the braided steel cable untwisting as it assumed the full weight, it begins to untwist and the body begins to spin, first one way and then the other. What was first imagined as a 5-minute performance ended up being 15 minutes.
The performance was about a counterpoint in scale. A whole physical body suspended above a larger fragment of the body - the ear on an arm. The body becomes an object in a sculptural installation. The performance began when the body was hoisted off the sculpture and ended when the body touched down. The 16 stainless steel hooks were inserted whilst the body lay on the Ear On Arm sculpture. After the cables were connected the body was winched up approximately 50 cm above the sculpture. The body spun one way and then the other for approximately 15 min.
When it stopped spinning, and in the correct orientation, the body was then lowered down. The installation was left in place for the duration of the exhibition with an edited video and an image authenticating the performance. The event was both a looping back to a previous performance strategy and simultaneously a looking forward to the Ear On Arm project, exposing the physicality of both.
The performance occurred on Thursday 8 March as part of the SUSPENSIONS exhibition which was from 7-31 March 2012 at SCOTT LIVESEY GALLERIES.
Stelarc: “The suspensions are experiments in bodily sensation, expressed in different spaces and in diverse situations. They are not actions for interpretation, nor require any explanation. They are not meant to generate any meaning. Rather they are sites of indifference and states of erasure. The body is empty, absent of its own agency and obsolete".
The Exhibition And Performance Was Dedicated To Nobuo Yamagishi, The Director Of The Maki, Tamura And Komai Galleries In Tokyo When Stelarc Lived In Japan. Yamagishi-San Was Admired Both Personally And Professionally. He Is Greatly Missed.
RECLINING STICKMAN is a 9m long robot, actuated by antagonistically bundled pneumatic rubber muscles. Visitors at the AGSA can insert their own choreography from a control panel. Anyone, anywhere at any time can remotely access and actuate the robot. A background algorithm intermittently animates the robot if no one intervenes.
The droning motor sounds, the solenoid clicks and the muscles compressing and contracting, extending and exhausting are amplified, registering the limb motions and extending the physical presence of the robot.
STELARC performed for 5 hours continuously positioned on the torso of the robot on Saturday 29 Feb 2020, 11.30 am - 4.30 pm. Reclining Stickman was streamed and in exhibition from 29 Feb – 16 August 2020.
Stelarc explains how he has visually probed and acoustically amplified his body.
Using medical instruments, prosthetics, robotics, Virtual Reality systems, the Internet and biotechnology, Stelarc explores Alternative Anatomical Architectures with augmented and extended body constructs.
In this documentary, the Pacha Queer movement, a dissident, rebel, counter-cultural, and “self-festive” community based in Quito, Ecuador, uses performance art to campaign for social, political, and sexual liberation. Monstras has been awarded as best film at Cine+Perfo 2022.
"In every African country we establish a careful inventory of all colonial statues and monuments. These we shall collect in a single park, which will serve as a museum for generations to come. This pan-African park-cum-museum will serve as colonialism's symbolic grave on our continent. Once we have performed this burial, let us --- promise never again to erect statues to anyone at all. Instead, let us build everywhere libraries, theatres, cultural centres - all these things that from this day forward will nourish tomorrow's creative growth." Achille Mbembe.
Future Monuments is an interactive meditation of historical visual experiences based on a visual interactive archival Opera score of which the video herewith is part. The project develops an experiment in sense-memory politics as a series of interventions examining memory and colonial histories in the past, present and future. Each score from the series will challenge visual experiences and perceptions about the way in which political language shaped histories, our sense of collective memory and trauma to propose new ways of memory through interaction, community participation and visual intervention.
The project intends to form a collective memory by creating a time machine through 11 scores of conceptual and visual experiences. The experience migrates through research and archives and ongoing modes of post-colonial experience across diverse cultures and spaces.
The investigation meanders through the stories of people and addresses the issues of forbidden and forgotten histories by creating visual interventions and building memorials for the 22nd century.
Each score responds to particular spaces, cultures and cities.
Future Monuments involves exercises in decolonial memories and actions on cannibalism to reform our perception of what we call history by breaking anthropological selections and reconstructing untold histories left in the memories of the present. It presents different spaces for investigation in indigenous communities and urban spaces.
This investigation towards decolonial cannibalism and aesthesis takes 5 stages:1. The Uncomfortable Truth (mourning)
2. Take This Hammer (commemorations)
3. Pieta (birth)
4. Les Statues Meurent Aussi (the gift monument)
5. The Brick Moon or an Ecology of Darkness (the future)
“The action begins with co-performer Inanna taking my blood, in front of a white table with an old Olivetti typewriter.
She pours my blood into a glass cup, and there we dip a six-meter-long white satin ribbon, till it’s completely soaked in blood. Then we stretch the ribbon across the performative space and use a golden hair dryer to dry the ribbon a bit. Immediately, the space gets marked by thin blood trails that intersect on the floor, almost creating a map of our movements through the room.
Then I open the typewriter and replace the old ink ribbon with the new one full of my own blood. I sit in front of the Olivetti and start hitting the keys. Without thinking, I write short surreal sentences that come spontaneously to my mind at that precise moment. When I finish writing, Inanna takes the paper sheets and attacks them to the almost invisible white wires hanging from the ceiling.
The last sentence I write is ‘Ofelia Non-Annega’ (Ophelia does not drown), in a celebration of female resilience against the romantic depiction of self-destructive female heroism.
The action is repeated from the very beginning for about six hours until the view of the performance space is completely covered.”
萬語千言 WISH YOU WHERE HERE
PROPEL: BODY ON ROBOT ARM
STARSHIP SOMATICS: An Underwater Dancevideofilm and video.
DRAG KING. IL SOGNO DI JULIA.
OLTRE IL CORPO (BEYOND THE BODY) Evolutions from Performance Art World.
ECCE (H)OMO, GUERRIERI (WARRIORS)
I'M THINKING OF YOU
MILK & BLOOD
Stay updated and get all the news in your mailbox
ARTISTS FIRST - ARTISTS FIRST - ARTISTS FIRST ARTISTS FIRST - ARTISTS FIRST - ARTISTS FIRST - ARTISTS FIRST - ARTISTS FIRST ARTISTS FIRST - ARTISTS FIRST