Offline Venus: Memories & Myths of a Cyborg

single channel film installation (8:43 duration)

Un_Becoming Exhibition

SomoS Art House in Berlin, Germany

October 22 - November 3, 2018

Presented for ScopeSessions #77 with Johanna Hohage

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The film installation Offline Venus: Memories and Myths of a Cyborg explores the consciousness of a virtual entity named cyborg_goddess09, who perceives of the world through the Internet. She manifests as a voice which navigates through the net-sphere — recollecting the origins of her identity, desires for a physical body, and obsessions with divine mythology. The film is influenced by Donna Haraway’s concept of the “cyborg” as a synthesis of dualisms: human/machine, male/female, natural/artificial. The cyborg rejects binary constructs of gender, sexuality, and race, and embodies an identity which is fragmented, multiple, “other,” fluid, and transforming.


Offline Venus examines the spatial and corporeal implications of technology on desire, body, and (non)human identities. As the interface between human and technology becomes increasingly invisible, the physical body is transfigured toward a multiplicity of new senses: virtual and real. The film explores how replications of body and space through technology — audio recording of voice, GIFS, found-footage, screen-captures on Rhino3D and GoogleEarth — create new sensorial perceptions and a virtual spatiality. Rather than fixing a surveilling gaze onto cyborg_goddess09, the film expresses the protagonist’s own visual and spatial perceptions through the use of poetic narrative and post-Internet aesthetics.

Housing as clothing as house

film (1:47 duration), performance, garment 

Collaboration with Ainslie Cullen, Fabiana Berenguer Gil, and Greg Keller

Advisor :: Danica Selem

Body / Space / In-between exhibition

Hartell Gallery in Ithaca, NY in Spring 2018

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Where does the body end and the room begin?

 

House as Clothing as House intends to deconstruct spatial conventions of how bodies inhabit space through the design of a garment which re-interprets a generic American home at 1 : 4 scale. While material conditions of walls, floors, ceilings — the elements of architecture — are understood to be static (evoking a sense of permanence), we speculate on the possibility of an amorphous, fluid, stretchy, ephemeral architecture. An architecture which transforms in relation to the body/bodies that perform within it. Imagine a deflated house. Instead of filling the void with air, we imagine filling the in-between spaces with bodies that are constantly moving and reconfiguring the architecture. The garment defamiliarizes an understanding of everyday objects / spaces and their performative potential as prosthetics (or extensions) of the body.

 

In the fabrication of House as Clothing as House we hope to address the politics of domesticity, sexuality, and gender that are inscribed within notions of “home”. In understanding architecture as an intrinsically violent act — walls separate bodies, delineate the boundaries of movement at multiple (even global) scales, and prescribe certain ideologies of everyday life — the construction of an amorphous house subverts the typical relation between body and space.

 

We crocheted long strips of semi-transparent tulle with our arms operating as “needles”. In the film, the three performers — perhaps suggestive of the Three Fates of Greek mythology — construct the house with their limbs and enact a ritualistic movement that expands / contracts / morphs the spatiality of the garment. In the end, we speculate: what does it mean to transform a symbol of the “American Dream” (a white-washed, hetero-normative dream/nightmare) into a soft, deflated garment?

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Ritual in Transfigured Space

film (4:39 duration), performance, drawing

Advisor :: Tao Dufour

a film, a zine, a performance exhibition with Brad Nath

Rand Hall in Ithaca, NY in Spring 2017

with thanks to Rachael Biggane (actor, installation) and Beth Tesfaye (documentation)

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Influenced by the film by Maya Deren, Ritual in Transfigured Time (1946), this film and performance re-enacts the opening sequence as a de-familiarizing exchange between two feminine bodies. The ritual of “weaving”, through repeating a series of gestures over and over in duration, is marked by traces of yarn soaked in black ink onto the vellum sheets. The site of the performance is Rand Hall, a studio space slated for reconstruction — further heightening the tension of spatiality between two bodies over time.

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simultaneous projections with Maya Deren's 1947 film

[below] scan of drawing produced