Saturday, February 19, 2011

The artist as cyborg - The Globe and Mail

The artist as cyborg - The Globe and Mail

"When New York artist Wafaa Bilal visited Toronto recently, he got together with inventor Steve Mann to compare notes on mounting cameras on their heads. Then they jumped into Mann’s hot tub to play some music.

Bilal, an Iraqi who has lived in the United States since 1991, is a performance artist who hopes to spend 2011 streaming photographs from the camera he had surgically implanted in the back of his head. Snapshots of his apartment and the streets, cafés and shops he frequents show up in batches on his website, with black blanks indicating places where he has not received permission to shoot, including New York University, where he teaches art.

Mann, an artist, musician and engineering professor at the University of Toronto who mounted a camera on his own head back in the 1990s, could be called the godfather of cyborg art, the inspiration for artists such as Bilal to consider how they might fuse their bodies and technology."

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