Monday, 9 August 2010

BodyTyping by Laura Alvarado

Laura Alvarado's collection 'My Affair' has evolved from a project titled BodyTyping, she goes on to explain her work as,
"a series of works in which the relationship between jewellery and the body is reinterpreted as the body is not only the wearer but it becomes an active part of its creation and its form.  The shape of the body serves as a mould and affects the final form obtained from the scan, creating a new piece every time. Each person is different and every impression is unique."
In 'My Affair" the concept for Alvarado's jewellery silhouettes is taken from the book “My Love Affair with Jewelry” by Liz Taylor. The jewellery is drawn and used as stencils on the naked skin, they are then scanned and digitalized with the help of a 3d scanner and printed using Rapid-prototyping Technologies.  Filming the process has brought the performative process of body decoration to the fore, allowing the observer to participate in the ritualistic practice of body decoration.   However it would be far too simplistic to label her work under 'performance', far better would be to ascribe it as 'body art', as defined by Amelia Jones in 'Body Art, Performing the Subject' where she explains how we should consider this form of work,

body art ... - in its opening up of the interpretive relation and its active solicitation of spectatorial desire - provides the possibility for radical engagements that can transform the way we think about meaning and subjectivity (both the artist's and our own).
Jones emphasises this point further by referring to Ira Licht, who argued in 1975,
"the relationship between artist, subject and public" - encourages us to rethink the very methods by which we fabricate histories of art and to rethink the ways in which we understand meaning to take place.
Alvarado is a designer who is part of a new understanding of the ways in which body art can radicalise our understanding of postmodernism as a method of visual production, while also revising how meaning and value are determined in relation to works of art and design.  Her work is important because she is performing the gradual shift that has been occurring since the middle of the last century, by articulating our experience of ourselves.

My Affair from Laura Alvarado on Vimeo.

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