The Second Spine

Date: 11/2019
3Dprinting, servo, Arduino

In my work “The Second Spine.” The human body is seen as an octopus like machine. Human organs and limbs become independent, decentralized and not completely controlled by the brain. The body is stretched, deformed and controlled by the equipment.

I externalized my body part, the spine as a robot that controls by a muscle sensor attached to my arm. With this gesture, I consider how a body can extrude its awareness and action onto other bodies in other places. After multiple iterations, the prototype became an exoskeleton spine that I controlled and was installed on another’s body, becoming an alternate operational entity that is spatially distributed but electronically connected.

This is not about a fragmented body but a multiplicity of bodies and parts of bodies prompting and remotely guiding each other. When performers wear these robots on their bodies, they communicate through movement paths. Each body is controlled by other bodies through muscle sensors. A system is formed due to the mutual control of muscles and machines. This is not about master-slave control mechanisms but feedback loops of alternate awareness and of split physiologies.