IMAfocus 2018 is inspired by the centennial anniversary of women’s suffrage in Austria.
IMA’s voting office XX tèchne 6.0 will be open from October 2018 to May 2019.
Idea: Tamara Wilhelm, Elisabeth Schimana
Concept: Tamara Wilhelm, Elisabeth Schimana, Seppo Gründler, and Norbert Math
We plan to rent a vacant business space with daily office hours, preferably in downtown St. Pölten as close to the town hall as possible.
Since the beginning of time the female body has served the purpose of propagating the human species. As a result, there has always been a clear link connecting offspring to the biological mother, but not to the father. Compared to the history of humankind this is a young phenomenon – scientific proof of paternity was first documented in a report based on genetic traits in Vienna in 1926. The social bond outweighs the rest.
The study of heredity/genetics and reproductive medicine brings about a series of new reproductive technologies. In 1978 the first test tube baby is born, conceived in vitro and transferred to the woman’s body. This achievement turns the female body into a breeding ground detached from social bonds.
The technicization of human reproduction continues to evolve. In haploidization, for example, the nucleus of a donor egg is replaced by the nucleus from one of the “mother’s” somatic cells and fertilized by a sperm cell, thus facilitating a gender unspecific form of reproduction.
The artificial womb is in the developmental stage and with the help of haploidization, reproduction without intercourse and without the other sex altogether will some day be possible.
The female body as a breeding ground for the preservation of the species will become obsolete.
What does this mean in terms of gender attribution? A curse or a blessing?
On hardly an issue is the global community so visibly divided as it is with the socio-cultural ideologies that determine what a “man” or a “woman” is or is supposed to be.
It is always basically about the preservation of the species and the culture and the ideological set of conditions connected with this culture. And always the female body – battered, used, and abused – is the arena where these ideological battles are fought.
The lifeworlds of men, from a global perspective, are fairly similar, whereas globally the lifeworlds of women or other genders are extremely different.
In our office we want to explore questions about gender attribution, encouraging participation first and foremost from the female residents of St. Pölten but from male residents too. We intend to conduct our investigation ad absurdum, making use of artistic methods in the process.
- What is the woman of the future or what is she like?
- What is the man of the future or what is he like?
- Weren’t there ever in the past or aren’t there in the present societies that recognize more than two genders?
- What is the family without biological parents?
- What is necessary for women to really be able to freely decide about their own bodies?
Who would I be if?