Tags: stelarc | ear | arm | body | performance | art

Stelarc's Ear on His Arm Was Grown for Body Performance Art

Image: Stelarc's Ear on His Arm Was Grown for Body Performance Art
Body performance artist Stelarc shows the ear growing on his arm. (YouTube)

By    |   Friday, 14 Aug 2015 06:59 AM

Australian artist Stelarc has worked with a medical team to successfully grow a human ear on his arm, for art's sake.

"The ear is pretty much now a part of my arm, it's fixed to my arm and it has its own blood supply," he told ABC Australia.

"People's reactions range from bemusement to bewilderment to curiosity, but you don't really expect people to understand the art component of all of this."

Stelarc, a professor at Curtin University, said he first conceived of the idea of putting an ear on his forearm in 1996, but it took over a decade to find a medical team willing to work with him to achieve his dream.

Once a medical team was assembled, they inserted a scaffold underneath Stelarc's skin, and over the course of six months his body had integrated it with blood vessels and tissue growing around it. Eventually, he hopes to use his own stem cells to grow a proper earlobe on the thing.

"This ear is not for me, I've got two good ears to hear with. This ear is a remote listening device for people in other places," he explains to people interested in his project.

He said he plans to equip the ear with a small wireless microphone that will allow anyone with an Internet connection to hear whatever he's doing.

"They'll be able to follow a conversation or hear the sounds of a concert, wherever I am, wherever you are. People will be able to track, through a GPS as well, where the ear is," he said. "Increasingly now, people are becoming Internet portals of experience ... imagine if I could hear with the ears of someone in New York, imagine if I at the same time could see with the eyes of someone in London."

The Week (UK) reported that the 69-year-old artist started his art career in using multimedia, but quickly moved into body performance.

From 1976-1988 he completed 25 performances wherein he suspended himself from hooks pierced through his flesh.

In other performances, he literally wired his muscles up to the Internet with electrodes, allowing users to move his muscles with the press of a button.

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Australian artist Stelarc has worked with a medical team to successfully grow a human ear on his arm, for art's sake.
stelarc, ear, arm, body, performance, art
364
2015-59-14
Friday, 14 Aug 2015 06:59 AM
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