Стив Диксон
Пост-телесный спектакль: тела виртуальные и тела роботов в исполнительских искусствах. (2001)
Тематика: Медиа-сообщества , Медиа-технологии , Медиа-технологии
Язык оригинала: английский

This will be presented as a multimedia paper, with the live presentation closely synchronised to video footage collected by the Digital Performance Archive. The video will feature performances by artists and companies including: Stelarc; Monika Fleishmann; Marcel Roco; Blast Theory; Random Dance; Amorphic Robot Works; Susan Kozel; Kirk Woolford; the Institute for the Exploration of Virtual Realities (ieVR); The Chameleons Group.

The paper begins by discussing the work of the Digital Performance Archive, which records and collates digital developments within theatre, dance and performance art, and documents large numbers of performances on video. It goes on to examine some of the key ideas and issues being explored by artists, particularly around the relationship between technology and the body. Computer technology not only offers a set of tools for the artist to use, but can increasingly be understood as an actual (i.e. physical) extension of the body and of the mind. Performers are exploring the possibilities for the synthesis of virtual and physical bodies and experimenting with ideas of transformation and the post-human: from changing one’s identity in cyberspace to becoming a cyborg; from activating imagery and sound through the body in space to translating human actions into solely robotic performances. Digital technology is transforming the whole concept of what performance is, and redefining notions of embodiment and disembodiment, absence and presence, and the authenticity of the performer as real or human.

The paper traces and shows ground-breaking live performances using varied digital systems: custom-built imaging software by artists such as Susan Kozel and Kirk Woolford; Virtual Reality technology by groups such as Blast Theory and ieVR; interactive cybertheatre events by The Chameleons Group (directed by the author); and robotic performances by groups such as Amorphic Robot Works. Stelarc’s radical internet and robotics experiments are also examined, and it is argued that they both symbolise the inadequacy of the human form in the face of technology, but also encapsulate the will to harness technology’s powers towards an actual evolution and transubstantiation of the body.

The paper concludes by arguing that contrary to the popular understanding of digital performance as a ‘postmodern’ construct, the tendencies within what I call ‘posthuman’ performance are actually harking back to the radical ideas of modernism and the avant-garde in the early decades of the 20th century. Posthuman performance is increasingly defining a ‘new modernist’ agenda concerned with technological progress, artistic spectacle, and human transformation which closely echo the ideas of Meyerhold and Schlemmer, and Antonin Artaud's visions (called 'impossible' in the 1930s) of a mesmeric, immersive, 'total' theatre.

Оригинал текста: Posthuman Performance: Virtual and Robotic Bodies in the Performance Arts

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