Kantor has organised a series of file cabinets that are invisibly linked by interactive logic software (MAX) and a system of hydraulic arms. A video looped image of the artist naked and bound is mesmerisingly and sensually displayed on a full wall height screen behind the cabinets. His genitals, and torso seemingly connected to the hydraulic hose of the invisible machine/controller, his face bound by a leather mask, he is looped through a series of writhing and stretching movements. The fragments of his movements and the referential emotions they evoke are controlled by the viewer and the interaction of the file cabinet drawers. The opening and closing of one file cabinet drawer sends a light signal to a photo sensor cell. This then causes the program to change the visual loop and simultaneously the mechanical arms attached to both file cabinets to react. A simple human gesture and a mechanical extension of the arm, controls the sound and the visual images, sending loops of invisible information for further processing. That simple gesture becomes the basis of our experience, our communication with the computer and thus another extension of our will and sensual pleasure.



Related Links:


Istvan Kantor Homepage
InterAccess Electronic Media Art Centre


Suzanne Farkas is a Toronto based freelance writer,editor and events co-ordinator whose portfolio includes a stint as editor of Explore magazine, industry and environmental newsletters , articles, and art reviews. Suzanne is currently co-editor and editorial board member of Women And Environment International magazine. The next issue "Healthy Communities through women's eyes" will feature a discussion of women as environmental art activists and community builders.

The filing cabinet is also a functional sculpture, a fascinating piece of simple, designed gadgetry. It is an expression of the mechanical and by that fact an extension or reflection of the human body, nature's mechanical design. Istvan is fascinated with dynamic boundaries, the melding of the body with the technological and the extension of the physical into infinite space. Our body as machine, our machines as human expression. Given the recent news headlines and the direction of current cybernetic and biotechnology research, Istvan's piece is a timely exploration of the contradictions, dilemma's and the addictive beauty of it all.

SUZANNE FARKAS 4/00

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