Performing bodies

22 11 2008

Now i’m going through  a particular category of art, always related to the body, but i think with much bigger impact on other people than the techniques shown before.The category of performing bodies. It is often something extreme.

The principal expressive mean used for this artistic genre of course is the human body. It is used to set up extemporary events accompanied by music, scenography, actions and gestures. Body art makes the body the absolute protagonist considering it subject and object of the artistic expression, exhibiting it as work of art. There is the will to provoke, to shake convinctions and belief about art.

The body is here used by different artist in different ways but Lea Vergine talks about different common characteristics. “the lost of identity, the refusion of reality prevalence on the emotional sphere, the romantic rebellion from something or sombody’ s dipendence, the absence (and the related anguish) of an adult form of love. Often in these actions the author is obsessed in working in function of the others, toward the pursuit of a not oppressed by functionalism reality.

“Unlocked the productive forces of unconsciousness, in a continuous hysterical dramatization – conflict between desire and defense, between license and banned content, between latent and manifested content, between impulses of life and death, including Voyer and exhibitionism, between sadistic tendencies and masochistic pleasure, including destructive fantasies and catharticness, are trigged. “


Two stage transfer drawing by Dennis Oppenheim-1971

“As I run a marker along Eric’s s back he attempts to duplicate the movement on the wall.
My activity stimulates a kinetic response from his sensory system. I am, therefore, Drawing Through Him”

“Rhytm 10” Marina Abramovich-1973

In her first performance Abramović explored elements of ritual and gesture. Making use of ten knives and two tape recorders, the artist played the Russian game in which rhythmic knife jabs are aimed between the splayed fingers of her hand. Each time she cut herself, she would pick up a new knife from the row of ten she had set up, and recorded the operation.

After cutting herself ten times, she replayed the tape, listened to the sounds, and tried to repeat the same movements, attempting to replicate the mistakes, merging together past and present. She set out to explore the physical and mental limitations of the body – the pain and the sounds of the stabbing, the double sounds from the history and from the replication. With this piece, Abramovic began to consider the state of consciousness of the performer. “Once you enter into the performance state you can push your body to do things you absolutely could never normally do.”The only limit is the loss of consciousness. If you loose it, you can not perform anymore.

The body is obsolete-Stelarc




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