September 19, 2017

The Body is Merely the Apparition of a Framework

September 18 - October 7, 2017
Flaxman Library Special Collections Exhibition Cases, Sharp Building 5th floor

This exhibition speaks to the ephemeral nature of the corporeal body, the nullity of selfhood under the paradigm of the image, the vacuity of an identity under duress, and its nodal, atomized, and specular character. A series of photographic self-portraits by John Stevens (MAVCS 2018) are paired with works from the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection by Adam Broomberg, Agnes Denes, Anneli Henriksson, Arno Mokros, Barbara Kasten, Beate Geissler and Oliver Sann, Christian Tunge, Critical Art Ensemble, Daniel Mellis, Emma Hammar, IC-98 (Taru Elfving and Patrik Söderlunf), Jarad Solomon, Javier Toro Blum, Jos Jansen, Lynne Heller, Mungo Thomson, and Stefan Burger.

“Like cybernetic reimagining’s of early motion studies by Eadweard Muybridge and Etienne Jules Marey, my self-portraits invoke the graph as a measure of the physical and subjective body. Whereas classic photographers used the graphic spatialization of the body to progress scientific and medical understanding, my portraits reflect on the subject that has come about since then: the individual as a result of the accelerated and technological adaption of the human body to modern life. The graph as a trope of modern life--from maps and spreadsheets to MRI’s and virtual reality--is practically inescapable. By projecting images of graphs onto my body, I am made visible only by the nature of the image itself, and the viewer only perceives me by observing the subtle undulations of lines reflecting over and across my corporeal body.” - John Stevens