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Themesicon: navigation pathCyborg Bodiesicon: navigation pathPostsexual Bodies
La Réincarnation de Sainte Orlan (Orlan), 1990

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marked out territories—moving along «lines of flight»—is something that is part of the subject. This is its most foreign part though, an uncanny and unresolved part. Besides the lines of flight, it is in particular the body without organs that illustrates this conflict of antagonistic forces, which define and at the same time overflow the subject. Brian Massumi makes the following suggestion in his «User's guide to capitalism and schizophrenia»: «Think of the body without organs as the body outside any determinate state, poised for any action in its repertory; this is the body from the point of view of its potential, or virtuality.» [17] If we now translate this ‹organless body› with ‹organization-less body,› we come closer to what Deleuze and Guattari understand by this. We are dealing you see with a body that simultaneously exists beside the organized (defined, divided up, sub-divided) body, that threatens to infiltrate or actually subverts—in the case of insanity, drugs and illness—the organization of the one body.

The French performance artist Orlan, who has become known for her spectacular operations, acts on a completely different level. In «La Réincarnation de Sainte Orlan»


and in the seventh operation, «Ceci est mon corps…ceci est mon logiciel: Omniprésence,» she had her face remolded according to classical models in art history. Entire parts of her face were cut open and numerous implants inserted, allowing a new face to emerge. During this procedure she quoted passages from works by the French psychoanalyst Jacques Lacan in order to make her ‹senseless› conduct comprehensible in its existential dimension. The ego is nothing more than an image, and a deceiving one at that, which we always fail to recognize; we never perceive it as it really is, but rather as we would like to be seen. [18] Or formulated in another way: Skin is all that I have; there is nothing under it: no ego, no soul, no truth. However even this skin is not unique, but malleable and changeable. Orlan cites the French psychoanalyst Eugénie Lémoine-Luccioni: «Skin is deceiving—in life, one only has one skin—there is a bad exchange in human relations because one never is what one has. I have the skin of an angel but I am a jackal, the skin of a crocodile but I am a poodle, the skin of a black person, but I am white, the skin of a woman, but I am a man, I never have the skin of what I

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