Permutae examines the impact of a shifting technological-biological horizon on both the individual and the larger social body, and how it allows us to change our bodies as it also works to control and classify our bodies. The performance paints a fantasy of what we want our bodies to be, balanced with our physical realities, limitations and the stresses imposed by an increasingly commodified cultural sphere. It is an exploration of how to continually re-focus the boundaries of queer embodiment and representation towards greater agency and manifestation of desire.
How are we caught up in the technological machine, perpetuating and propagating it, fascinated with it to an end still hidden from our mind’s eye? Technology has become an extension, and a re-creator, of our physical bodies and their significance.
Finley and I co-art directed this layered piece. I created a technical framework for the projection of Finely’s drawn chimeral bodies and video and audio-scapes to contain and parallel the choreography.
Inspired by electron microscope images, which are a topography of the unseen, I developed the video’s cellular imagery through procedural techniques to evoke biotechnology and the relationship of the individual to society.
The audio is collected sounds of textures and movement: of a train moving through a tunnel, power tools excavating metal, a modem modulating data, humans in conversations. The mundane accompanies us through our infinite destructions, transformations and creations. Found sound is layered with synthetic sounds and remixes of artist Agraph’s “Light Particle Surface” and “While Going Down the Stairs I.”
Permutae was performed at CounterPULSE August 12th and 13th, 2011.