Critical Making and Redesigning the Human ?


We have just published two interesting podcasts on creative disturbance
that discuss critical making in the context of the human body:

Christina Cogdell address how modern synthetic biology treats the body
as designable- and links this to the eugenics movement

By looking at the history of Eugenics and Design, Christina Cogdell questions the cultural values we affect to biologically designed artifacts and how humans, through that process, may become mere products. She also takes into consideration the evolution of technology in relation to the history of energy and the horizontal gene transfers that occur between living organisms to balance her ‘techno-pessimistic’ approach.

With a very different perspective Stelarc talks about his ability to fuse
himself with robotic systems and talks about the range of properties
that constitute ‘aliveness”

Stelarc comments the various degrees of aliveness running through his work from his recent robotic choreography (Propel, 2015) which combines the automated and the improvised. In reflecting upon the NeoLife conference opening exhibition Futile Labor (I. Zurr, O. Catts, C. Salter, D. Wards) that examined shifting perceptions of life through motion and agency, Stelarc offers elements of response to the very question of what minimum vocabulary of behavior or movement is needed to generate a sense of aliveness.

would be interested in comments on critical making and redesigning the


we have a discussion on critical making on the YASMIN discussion list:

join the discussion at

see the posts to date at:

roger malina

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