Cyborg was curated on the premise that even non-technology based artists are acknowledging the changes in the concept of the figure that is taking place due to innovations in genetics, prosthetics and our understanding of alternate forms of consciousness that co-exist with our own. As our idea of the human body in relation to its environment and it’s potential for transformation and development has changed , so to do artistic representations of our selves. Artists such as Katie Holten and Dillon Cohen, and Michel Huelin, look at the alignment of the human consciousness and vegetal patterns of growth and the expansion of forests. Juliana Huxtable adresses a post-gender society, and creates her own set of heroes, martyrs and stereotypes based on older tropes combined with a newer more fluid society, and she then adds in a text-based platform that assimilates contemporary anime and video game symbolism as well. Mike Cloud also uses text; word play and riddles in particular to pad his symbolic but deeply body-referent paintings with a linguistic subtext. Tamar Ettun, a dancer, investigates the body paired up with objects–sometimes in a gentle pas de deux, but just as often as a painful intrusion. Cordy Ryman, on the other hand removes the body, but envelops the viewer in an installation that is wall based and transforms the human narrative into an architectural manifestation. All of the artists in the exhibition avoid the typical example of cyborg as human/robot interface and instead look at the heart of the definition, as human-plus-other. My thinking about Cyborg arose largely from an interview and correspondence with archeologist Colin Renfrew that has been taking place over the last 4 years.
All images courtesy of the artists, Will Corwin and Zurcher Gallery.