In an automated world the mutated body - an interface with the possibility
for error - is pushed to the limits of the creative working process, having
only the opportunity to give little inputs within the chain-reaction of systems,
and on the other hand, to receive only outputs.
The body is the bridge connecting different machines, a sender of impulses
where the interaction with the surrounding world is cut down to the primitive
handling of a joystick, pressing a single key on the keyboard or stimulating
sensors. The world is being programmed at a very different place.
Like an empty form it seems to exist as nothing more than hands, ears, mouth,
feet, and eyes. Hand-mouse, foot-pedal, finger-keyboard, eye-screen, sense-sensors:
these are perfekt binomials of dependency, of an "interpassive" relationship
with the world in which freedom of choise is a myth because the decision actually
only be made within a limited menu of alternatives. Hautnah (Skintight) or "The
Artist's Skin" focuses on the subjekt of the body itself, to be more
precise, the outermost border, the external shell: the skin that filters,
regulates and sometimes determines the entire network of relationships and
exchange with the surrounding world, defines the contours of the image which
is reproduced on the other person's retina.
Playing with the thought of slipping out of my own skin for just a moment
and offering it to someone else, brought me to this idea: to make a suit out
of my own two-dimensional picture, which offers another the opportunity to
go through the world hidden within the "Artist's Skin".
In order to realise the clothing of my own skin, I put photographs of my
body into the computer digitally and then processed them, formed them, cut
them so that they fit into the dress-pattern of a suit. Thus it was possible
to remodel the two-dimensionality into a three -dimensional body form in the
tradition of the ancient art of tailors. Through this process and the use
of electronic medium, the body becomes a virtual entity, a data landscape,
a digital abstraction.
Hautnah is an hommage to the body, both forgotten and celebrated, repeated
obsessively and iconically as a two-dimensional picture in a dematerialized,
transformed message of itself in our information age.
Participants in this installation in the Sindelfingen Gallery:
Nico Reichelt (Assistant), Ruby Wambold (tailor); in addition, thanks to
the people at the Institut für Neue Medien Frankfurt, the Sindelfingen
City Gallery, and Pfaff, Stuttgart.
Translation by Rebekah Edminster