M HKA, Antwerp

05 October 2012 - 20 January 2013

I gave my body to art.

ORLAN is well known as the first artist to use her own body as a medium with which to make art. In 1980 there was the major exhibition ORLAN at the ICC. She also carried out a mesuRAGE there, a performance in which she measures (mesurer) streets or buildings using her own body physically and literally as a unit of measure: the ORLAN-corps. In her work ORLAN seeks a relationship with her surroundings, both symbolic and real. She does this in a long sequence of actions that are both concrete and ritualistic. These mesuRAGEs also have a ‘rage’ content, since the institutions she commonly measures herself against mainly represent male power. At the same time, these actions are full of humour, a duality that characterises the whole of ORLAN’s oeuvre.

The M HKA project shows ORLAN’s interest in the mesuRAGEs and what they might signify today. Also with regard to her current physical state, because, as she says, a human has several bodies. She carried out two new mesuRAGEs, one for the Any Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh and one for the M HKA. ORLAN uses new technologies like a GPS and a BodyMedia Armband, that collects the physical data of her body and measures the physical efforts of the body during the making of the artwork. You can see the artworks that arise from the performance in the exhibition and this will remain part of the collection.

Know more? Click here for more reflections by ORLAN.

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