Your Body is a Becoming Machine 2. 2018
performance / video and still image
Performed by Antonios Maros, Hannah M Taylor, Samuel Ross
The work is about developing treatment method for depression in the connection of fashion.
Depression has two fields of state. Economic state and mental state.
In Franco Bifo Berardi’s book <the soul at work>, he insists that the events of economic depression and of psychic depression have to be understood in the same context.
He said this is not simple wordplay, this is not only a metaphor, but the interweaving and interacting of psychological flows and economic processes.
Based on my own experience and thinking, I came to the conclusion that depression cannot be solved by separating the ideology of consumerism and capitalism.
Bifo said panic and depression is not an individual psychopathology, but an individual manifestation of wide-spread social syndrome.
While Consumerism ideology create illusionary happiness model, Neo-liberalism encourage more competitions.
This infinite stimulus makes people feel overwhelmed, so that they panic. And once they overtaxed to an unbearable degree, a panic crisis may collapse, manifesting a sudden psychic loss of motivation.
This situation is called depression for psychologists.
Therefore, when dealing with a depression the problem is not to bring the depressed person back to normativity, to reintegrate behavior in the universal standards of normal social language.
Rather, the goal is to change the focus of his/her depressive attention, to re-focalize, to deconstruct the habituated flow.
Bifo says therapy needs to be understood as similar to art. Because sensation is directly invested.
I wanted to actualize in the context of Bifo’s prescription for depression in my final work by practicing new way of relationship of body and objects through instinctive movement, and reactivating motivation to connection with the world. I felt right to use things that are abandoned and broken because they are thrown out of the consumerist society and all the sign values of it are stripped.
The work is based on people’s performances and recording/documentation of them like case study. I asked performers to fill and complete the objects using body and tapes.
In this process, the tape shell becomes a thin layer of skin that connects the body and the object, and is the basic concept of the 'clothes'. In other words, clothing becomes a process and a result of treatment.
Because performers participate in this process themselves, practice to find their own new way of using fatigued body, and each of these 'clothes' reveals their temporality, multiple subjectivity, and embodiment.
Discarded things do not cease to be things. They persist, on the contrary. Our decision to banish them may give us the feeling that they have been annihilated. But this is not quite the case. You know as well as I do that they endure. They may be tarnished, or in bits and pieces, or mouldy, I grant you. But they continue to exist and to commingle with each other. In the next world of the dustbin, the afterlives of things pursue their courses. In these basements and these rubbish chutes, there is no nothingness. Rather, a world bursting with fullness.
... Take a closer look. Stop telling yourself that those things that have overstayed their welcome in your life are magically spirited out of existence. Or those thing that have ceased to sparkle and please you. All putrefying things, the broken, ageing, threadbare, worn-out things; all those edifices of wrapping, of appearance, those ephemeral containers - all of it continues to accumulate somewhere else. I look with pity on the gaily-coloured carton which contained my wild-fruit yoghurts. An absurd reaction. Or perhaps not.
... Billions upon billions of things are thus flung away each day without a backward glance. Things which emerge from the void only to return thither without ever being so much as noticed. Which is why I am now giving them the benefit of my compassion. And why is it oddly difficult to avoid this trap of feeling? Probably because the same fate awaits us too: the falling apart, the stretch, the being consigned to a plastic bag - ineluctably, definitively, ingloriously. And not just we ourselves, as individuals and organisms, but our works, our groups, our societies, our civilisations. Our knowledge, our experience. All of it, one day, in the dustbin. It’s not that this evening I suddenly discover the dustbin to be the destiny of our world. None the less, at this moment I can find no solace in the thought. In fact, I am not sure how to endure it. This damned bag I am carrying feels heavier and heavier.