Stelarc at WRO Media Art Biennale 2011

Stelarc is a Cypriot-Australian performance and new media artist. Stelarc’s work focuses on extending the capabilities of the human body. At the 14th Media Art Biennale WRO 2011: Alternative Now in Wroclaw, Poland, Stelarc presented his performance Phantom Flesh / Circulating Organs.

VernissageTV correspondent Ania Ejsmont met with Stelarc on the occasion of his participation in the WRO Biennale. In this interview, Stelarc talks about his performance at Alternative Now, and other recent projects such as the Third Ear, a cell-cultivated ear surgically attached to his left arm.

Stelarc was born in Limassol (Cyprus) in 1946. He studied at the Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. Since the 70s he deals with the relation between man and machine. He experiments with prothetics, virtual reality, the Internet, and robotics. He is currently Chair in Performance Art, School of Arts, Brunel University London, Uxbridge, UK.

The WRO Biennale is organized by the WRO Media Art Center Foundation as part of the WRO Art Center’s activities.

Stelarc at 14th Media Art Biennale WRO 2011: Alternative Now. WRO Media Art Center, Wroclaw, Poland, May 14, 2011. Video by VernissageTV correspondent Ania Ejsmont.

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Information about the performance at WRO Media Art Biennale 2011:

Second Life Performance: Phantom Flesh / Circulating Organs

The body performs as its 4 clones (2 avatars, 2 automatons) in an interactive sound space of amplified brainwave, muscle and heartbeat sounds with an installation of rotating brains and a beating heart.

Stelarc’s Second Life site was constructed by Daniel Mounsey and is hosted by RMIT Creative Media, Melbourne, Australia.

Stelarc has visually probed and acoustically amplified his body. He has made three films of the inside of his body. Between 1976-1988 he completed 25 body suspension performances with hooks into the skin. He has used medical instruments, prosthetics, robotics, Virtual Reality systems, the Internet and biotechnology to explore alternate, intimate and involuntary interfaces with the body. He has performed with a THIRD HAND, a VIRTUAL ARM, a STOMACH SCULPTURE and EXOSKELETON, a 6-legged walking robot. His PROSTHETIC HEAD is an embodied conversational agent that speaks to the person who interrogates it. He is surgically constructing an EAR ON ARM that will be internet enabled.

In 1997 he was appointed Honorary Professor of Art and Robotics at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh. In 2003 he was awarded an Honorary Degree of Laws by Monash University. He received a New Projects grant from the Australia Council in 2010 to develop a micro-robot. Last year he was also awarded the Prix Ars Electronica Hybrid Arts Prize. He is currently Chair in Performance Art, School of Arts, Brunel University London, Uxbridge, UK. He is also Senior Research Fellow and Visiting Artist at the MARCS Auditory Labs at the University of Western Sydney, Australia. Stelarc’s artwork is represented by the SCOTT LIVESEY GALLERIES in Melbourne.

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