The book The Impossible Body by Bojana Kunst deals with one of the most topical subjects in art, science and humanities: the relation between the human body and a machine. Visionaries, fantasts, philosophers, scientists and artists have imagined the impossible body as a machine, an automaton, a model of a digesting duckling, Golem, a homunculus, an electrical soul, an engine, a wax figure, a marionette, an iron woman, an Eve of the future, a glass man … All of these impossible bodies are subjects of an extraordinary study that comprises a period from the birth of modern science in the 18th century until the avant-garde theatre of the 20th century.
“Lately, there has been an increased interest in the problem of the body in theatre, especially in connection with the increase of different performance practices, and on the other hand, in the problem of the body and its representation as a theoretical problem. The text by M.A. Bojana Kunst steps out of a multitude of contributions to the subject by the broad swing with which the author has tackled the issue, and by the theoretical and historical absorption of her approach.” (from a review by Mladen Dolar, Ph.D.)
The issue of the book The Impossible Body in December 1999 has coincided incredibly with Generalna akcija Gravitacija Nič Noordung (General Action Zero Gravity Noordung) by the Slovenian theatre utopian Dragan Živadinov. In the action, one of the ‘impossible bodies’ of the theatre visionaries of the 20th century was realized for a few seconds.
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