Virginia Barratts cyborg performance, Invert X, at Brisbane’s Institute of Modern Art (IMA) during the recent Heat Seeking Performance Series, operated to construe future sexual difference as a kind of madness residing outside the existing social order as pain, danger, power and ecstasy. Playful explorations of what might constitute women’s pornography is one of the strategies used by ‘the ultimate mercenaries of slime’, VNS MATRIX (Virginia Barratt. Francesca da Rimini, Julianne Pierce and Josephine Starrs) whose Cyber Feminist Manifesto for the 21st Century appeared at Ars Electronica. and at Siggraph ’92 (Chicago). This group’s practice centres on ethics and technological development; the imaging of women in cyberculture: the relationship of the gendered body to computers, and future-sex. ALL NEW GEN, an interactive work-in-progress, previewed at the Australian Centre for Photography during TISEA and later at the IMA introduces a new cyberconstruct onto the block: ALL NEW GEN, the “gamegirl” whose enemy is “Big Daddy Mainframe” … the essence of a futuristic omnipotent military-industrial complex (who) with her posse of Homegirls … acts as a virus, infiltrating and corrupting the BDM databanks.”
Mainstream techno-discourses that link human systems and machine systems by drawing analogies between the nervous or immune systems and computer systems and communications networks when dysfunction occurs (for example, the use of the metaphors of immunology and ecology—”pollution”, ‘virus’, “disinfect’ ‘clone’, etcetera) reflect the depth of penetration of supposedly value-neutral medical research, such as that into AIDS and reproductive technology, into our cultural assumptions. The aligning of women with negative attributes in gendered dualisms is one of the many strategies of the dominant culture that has transposed itself into an informatics of domination.
- Magazine Article
- Under the VR Spell?: Subverting America's Masculinist Global hologram
- eyeline: east coast contemporary visual arts, pp. 20–22, number 21, autumn 1993, English
- Eyeline Publishing Limited, QLD, Australia