The Body Instead

Allison Walker

The Body Instead is about exploring the subjectivity and objectivity of the body and the self, using mold-making and casting techniques and materials.

My thesis is an exploration in materials, using the body and the self as subjects, excluding our notions about body image and personal appearance. I am recontextualizing the image of myself and, using different materials to represent my body, I am to explore the relationship between the external (camera) "eye" or lens, the eye of the mind, and the I of the self. I will be exploring my self-image and my conscious and unconscious reactions to experiencing myself as an external physical object and as a concept.

Adrian Piper - Pipilotti Rist - Ana Mendiata. Cameras vs Mirrors vs. reactions from other people.

I plan to create a full-body, life-sized cast of myself, first out of plaster, then out of other materials, such as paper-mache, chrysanthemums. I want to live with a realistic version of myself, reflecting on the experience of creating my body and living with it. Then, I plan to destroy the casts and use the pieces that remain in "body related ceremonies" or other mini projects/art, such as simply giving them away as gifts or by using them in a funeral ceremony.

In any case, the whole thing will be fully documented, with video and/or photography. Perhaps sound. Reflecting on this process before, during, and after, as a part of the documentation, is vital to the work.