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FleshFactor: Re: Grounding

A E C  F O R U M - "F L E S H F A C T O R"

Someone with the codename "j" wrote about the charming nora from the
"arctic circle" project of philip pocock and felix stephan huber.  This
project documented their journals, travelling through british columbia and
the yukon and northwest territories to the arctic circle, arriving just
days before molson breweries flew courtney love, kiss and the entire
audience up there for a concert.  yikes!  they're on another journey now,
to the equator, again documenting their encounters and performances along
the way. 




I just arrived back from New York to find 237 messages on my e-mail - most
of them from the fleshfactor forum.  It's taken me nearly a whole day just
to get through half of them.  Meanwhile, it's canada day and a band with
majorettes has passed by, a street away, and the radio plays only music by
canadian composers and musicians.  someone finally phoned me and invited
me out to eat, or I'd be here all night, just reading and thinking and
wired up to flesh and its factors. 

So, a contribution -

in September, 18-21, just after your jamboree, there will be a meeting of
the feminist art and histories network in Reading, UK.  The title of this
conference is "virtue and vulgarity" - explorations in visual culture,
about art, science and the body.  Some of the papers being proposed terrify
me - like "Female Bodybuilding: The Pleasure-Pain of Hypermuscularity" - a
topic for feminists in the nineties, if there ever was one.  "Fleshy
Excess: A Bakhtinian Analysis of the work of Jenny Saville"  (a young
Scottish painter, made infamous by the Saatchis, who bought all her work
before she had graduated from art school, and the Sunday Times). Or one of
my very favourites: "the Management of the Procreative Woman" through new
technologies (in hospitals) and in advertising.  Or maybe "Hysteria,
Agoraphobia, Anorexia: From the conflictual to the Empty Body" in which the
writer acknowledges that domination has led to starvation and the actual,
not the virtual, dissolving of the female body.

We used to worry about women being equated with nature.

("j" still finds nora charming, so not much has changed there, in terms of
the romanticization of the "nature-al".) 

Now we can add some other concerns; we can worry about the excesses of the
nature-al - hypermuscularity and flesh - or about the management and
dissolution of the procreative, female body.  Lucky it's only the
intellectuals that care.  Everyone else is busy bein born and busy dying. 

 Judith Mastai


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