Central to my artistic practice is an ongoing exploration of the intangible body. I choose to work mainly with mixed media painting and performance, where parts of the creative process have been replaced or inspired by machine movements or my ‘artificial bodies’. This exploration has led me to develop my own painting technique where intuition is linked to sight and where the movement of the hand or machine controls the result, rather than what I think.
The background to this research based practice and why I started painting again, was after a period of illness where my body was paralyzed and I was involuntarily bedridden. Whilst waiting for my body to recover, I started painting to speed up the time. At the same time, my mobility was limited to small hand movements. I soon realized that I felt much better about painting and that I could paint for a long time. In using repetitive movements to create lines and circles over and over again, I was now able to create large formats, larger than my own body, which gave me a sense of my own inner strength. Today I know that this interaction between my eyes and the brain was a healing process, a condition that can be compared to meditation.
Since painting is a physically demanding job, it became a new challenge for me and to find a way back into control of my own body, I first had to learn to let go of it. At the same time, I asked myself how can I create art without a physical body and I started simplifying working methods and began to build my machines. The machines I build and use today are quite difficult to control, which then in itself became a new working method for me. Through knowledge and collaboration with researchers, I intend to investigate the technological possibilities available in order to transfer part of my consciousness, a task to an artificial body, a machine, which will be programmed with the method I work with when I paint. When the whole process has been automated, I have created my own artificial body that can be creative, in the same way that I can, and that journey in itself is so fascinating.
At the same time, questions arise; When the artist’s body begins to become a body, does it mean that the thoughts and ideas are also a type of body ? What is a consciousness ? What happens when the human hand is replaced by or supplemented with an artificial hand ? What happens when an artist exchanges roles with a robot, where the robot becomes the creator and the artist just performs?
These are all avenues I continue to consciously explore in my work.