During Interakcje Stelarc facing a laptop and xbox kinnect (motion detector), used his gestures to
steer an avatar displayed from projector at screen behind artist. Artist?s moves in space inflicted
particular reaction of an avatar in virtual space e.g. when artist raised his left hand the figure on
screen made backflip.
After this action Stelarc delivered kind of manifesto in which he explained object of his art. Body
does not function as integral entity. Our bodies are infected by technology, prosthesis, implants.
Also we don?t exist in one place in time, because we can have second life in cyberspace. One body
can be steered by another. During Stelarc?s speech avatar displayed behind him was reflecting his
movement. The act was fulfilled with presentation of additional ear that artist ?grew? on his left
forearm. The ear was designed as kind of device for transmitting received data into internet.
Małgorzata Michałowska (ASP Szczecin)
Michałowska begun her performance by showing movie from performance that she made a few
days earlier. She combined unpleasant sound of sawn nails with piano melody. Long nails make
playing difficult so artist sawed them harder and harder until she started to bleed, just to play
piano better. Therefore she presented the training process, disciplining the body of artist, that
listeners don?t think about.
In performance shown at Interakcje artist wearing white, knelt in front of the audience, took of her
shoes and glasses, and poured red clay in front of her. After that in atmosphere she was tempering
it using her own saliva. She covered her eyes with tempered clay. When she covered them so that
she could no longer see she stood up and walked into audience zone. Maybe she wanted to make
connection with audience using touch, but more likely she was interested in non-sight exploring of
the space, while people and objects served her as orientation points. She closed her performance
walking away from sight.
Combining performed action with presented videoperformance there appears interest in body, and
Herma Auguste Wittstock (Germany)
Herma Auguste Wittstock has also based her performance on her own body. Naked artist lying
several dozen centimeter above ground on lines hanging from celling afflicted not only the pine
inflicted by lines sawing into her body. Need to remain in one position caused tension. Above her
head there was a bottle with yellow colored washing liquid, dripping into artists open mouth until
the bottle run empty. Yellow liquid poured from artists mouth on the floor. Artist finished her
performance by releasing soap bubbles. She stood up slowly from unpleasant position that she was
in for teen minutes. You could have seen strain on her face and marks made by ropes.
Performer seems to play exceptional game with audience ? she shows them the pain that naked
body suffers from ropes, combining it with image of intense colors (rouge long hair, yellow-green
bright liquid). Wittstock put audience in situation in which they are aware of pain that she suffers,
but still enjoy visually tasteful scene.
Roi Vaara (Finland)
Roi Vaara started his performance with presenting to manual ?how to carry Your leg?. He showed
steps one have to follow for the carrying to be correct. He also introduced possibility of third leg
usage, in his case female dummy leg. One also has to carry this leg. Artist equipped with third leg
presented possibility of using it statically as much as more dynamic.
After that artist referred to Finland, his motherland where is a lot of swamps, so one has to be
wearing wellingtons to be safe. Saying that he changed his shoes ? polished oxfords into rubbers.
In that place the sound came along ? he plugged speakers that emitted rhythmic sound of splash
produced by man walking across swamp. Walking along to the sound of splash, carrying the third
leg all the time he left the gallery and took a walk on the street, then came back to finish his
Roi Vaara using the absurd points out the irrationality of fixed world order, conventionality of rules,
commonly accepted as obvious. He reverses that order, by analyzing such an easy act as walking.
Object disturbing this fixed order is the third leg.
Istvan Kantor (Kanada)
Istvan Kantor?s performance was based on gesture expression and action with props. The action
was accompanied by loud techno music that gave it rhythm. His performance consisted of two
parts. First in which artist acted in front of an audience and second in which he took people into
action. During his action he changed his clothes twice ? Kantor started dressed like Bolshevik
revolutionist in worn green coat and hat with 5-arm star. The outfit was completed by red flag
hanging on a stick ? branch from a tree.
Artist was making a couple paraphrases of Leonard Cohen?s songs interweaved by comments
to the rhythm of techno music. In performance one could have seen escalation of acts related
to body. Kantor started with expression of voice, then taking symbolic gestures with usage of
props and his body e.g. covering his had with red flag, falling on the floor and inserting the
needle in his arm. From time to time he was repeating series of symbolic gesture ? the Sign of
the Cross, sign of victory etc. During performance he scribed two slogans: ?museum = prison?
and ?I never make any boring art!!!?. Artist not only used props on his own body but also on
the surrounding ? using the pitchfork he tore the plaster of the wall. Finally he dressed, white
shirt and jacket (previously there were several changes of clothing) and so prepared he poured
petrol over piece of wood placed between two chairs and set it on fire. He performed handstand
and in this position walked to the fire and fell breaking the burning stick with his body. In second
part of action he lined up against the wall with a group of audience that pretended to be executed.
The key to Kantor?s performance was the spirit of revolution, energy, fight against existingreality, disagreement with existing world, expressed in extraordinarily dynamic and energeticaction. On one hand artist was using propaganda tricks ? shouting, slogans, appropriate musicand energy and on the other one could have felt elements of irony, humor and grotesque. Of
course, a description of the performance can never replace experience “live”because it is the basisfor this kind of art, but can in some way bring nature and structureof certain activities. For Kantor,however, putting in a review nature of his actionsinvolving a highly emotional audience proveddifficult.
Tłumaczenie ? Maciej Neneman