By Petra Kuppers
Modern visible and function artists have followed smooth clinical applied sciences reminiscent of MRIs and desktop imaging—and the physically entry they imply—to demonstrate their obstacles. In doing in order that they emphasize the unknowability of another’s physically event and the effects—physical, emotional, and social—of scientific methods. within the Scar of Visibility, Petra Kuppers examines using clinical imagery practices in modern paintings, in addition to diversified arts of lifestyle (self-help teams, neighborhood occasions, net sites), concentrating on fantasies and “knowledge tasks” surrounding the human physique. one of the works she investigates are the debatable physique Worlds exhibition of plastinized corpses; video initiatives through Shimon Attie on diabetes and Douglas Gordon on psychological well-being and warfare trauma; functionality items by means of Angela Ellsworth, Bob Flanagan, and Kira O’Reilly; motion pictures like David Cronenberg’s Crash and Marina de Van’s In My dermis that fetishize physique wounds; representations of the AIDS virus within the nationwide Museum of future health and on CSI: Crime Scene Investigations; and the work of outsider artist Martin Ram?rez. on the center of this paintings is the scar—a position of construction, of repetition and distinction, of a number of nerve sensations, fragile dermis, outer signal, and physically intensity. in the course of the embodied signal of the scar, Kuppers articulates connections among subjective event, heritage, and private politics. Illustrated all through, The Scar of Invisibility broadens our realizing of the importance of clinical photographs in visible tradition. Petra Kuppers is affiliate professor of English on the college of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and the writer of incapacity and modern functionality: our bodies on facet.
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Additional info for The Scar of Visibility: Medical Performances and Contemporary Art
Architecture, structure, and iconicity seem the reference points for Fletcher’s framing. Fletcher discusses his image on his Web site. There he also displays many di,erent versions of the image, with slightly varying backgrounds for the syringe. ” He was diagnosed with MS in 2001, and he explains how this diagnosis, and the hospitalization that Visions of Anatomy preceded it, led to his art creation. Fletcher’s description of his life postdiagnosis focuses on the pharmaceutical industry. Di,erent from some disabled artists, Fletcher’s perspective seems celebratory rather than critical, emphasizing the achievement of modern medicine and the costliness of the endeavor.
These images arrive on television screens with a history and a certain authority. ”15 Discussing di,erent historical moments of medical imagery, Kemp points to some of the issues that open up when photographic realism presents the body (he discusses stereoscopic slides of photographic representations of skin diseases): Even such apparently obvious pieces of mechanical realism proved to be fraught with social frissons, particularly with respect to the portrayal of recognizable individuals and the potentials for voyeuristic viewing.
In the following discussion, I set up a tension between transparency and opacity to analyze the problems encountered in creating representations of bodies that consciously generate possibilities for knowing our bodies. 24 In the context of this chapter, they help me to think about a spatiality of vision, a sense of interaction between gazes and volumes. The thickness of matter—materiality itself—becomes the object of fantasies. The noncoincidence of bodies and visions, and of medical vision machines and individual desires, creates interferences and produces new relations between touch, vision, experience, and metaphor.