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Themesicon: navigation pathCyborg Bodiesicon: navigation pathMonstrous Bodies
Again & Again/The Border (Melhus, Bjørn), 1998

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finger, a feeler. The monstrous is no longer the ugly or deformed, but the (too) smooth and permanently fluid. In Olaf Breuning's recent photoseries «I never invite my friends again, they are weird! I-IV» (2003), the uncannily fluid of the digital image becomes the literal melting away and becoming monstrous of the face. This homogenous-fluid aesthetics of digital bodies is repeatedly interpreted as the effect of the technical possibilities of new media. However, I maintain that these imagined bodies are less technology-related, but rather that they spring from the imagery of the information age and that they are also more general basis fantasies of the dissolution of subjectivity. The sculptural examples in particular showed that fantasies of the fluidization and proliferation of the body are not bound to media.

From Technology to Metaphor: The Fluidity of Digital Bodies

A horizontal, green ray that forms an aural column and from which a blond man in underwear—the artist—emerges. In Björn Melhus' video «Again & Again (The Borderer)» (1998) notions of feasibility from the


areas of biotechnology and cosmetic surgery are digitally staged; the issue is cloning, control, and going out of control: Reproductive technology presents the man as a godlike creator, multiplies his body in ornamental plant patterns, and finally lets him hopelessly fall into a black hole. It is about the collapse and the permeability of categorical boundaries between nature and technology, of body and subjectivity: the protagonist is a cyborg. He may well be a man, but at the same time he is a synthetic juncture of being a man, father, mother, child, brother, plant and inorganic cathode ray. His maleness is no longer sovereign lord-ship, but the meeting place for multiple concepts of the reproductive that have captured the demiurge and raised it to the status of the divested (literally of his clothes). He is—as are, by the way, most of the figures in Melhus' videos—an unmarked revenant and inhabitant of the border to Limboland, [8] beyond death and castration: The black hole is not death but the uterus machine in action, which has replaced death in favor of the endless replication of the One and incessantly makes replicas of humans, plants and images.

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