MPhil/PhD Fine Arts Kim Young Lundstroem Kilde Royal College of Art Abstract: Or did they not even hide these thoughts, or was it only, because my vision was so tired, that I saw them doubled in time, as one sometimes sees double in space? (Proust, 1913-27, vol. 2, À la recherche du temps perdu)
This Ph.D. in Fine Arts Research explores the concept of Out of body experience, OBE, as an inherent and fundamental factor in visual art, throughout modernity and particularly the avant-garde. I will work from Marshall McLuhan’s theory about the prosthetic media technology and Bernard Stiegler’s idea about technics, opening to a world seen from the multiple view angles of cubism, moving towards a both surreal and suprematist disembodiment. Taking its starting point in simulacra and oscillation, the project deals with concepts of amputation and fragmentation, i.e. a prosthetic view on media and visual art. The installations will aim to explore the limits of perception, and expand the vision of the world by using the body as a medium, in order to reconnect our consciousness to the world in a radical state of otherness, where the vision of one’s own body, seen from a point of view outside, will link us to the famous conceptual works “Not to be reproduced”, 1937 by René Magritte and “Live Video Taped Corridor” 1969-70 by Bruce Nauman. Today Out of body experience appear to become a more accessible experience through digital media such as Virtual Reality, where the doubling simulacra of the corporeal image turns into a common consequence of mediation, and oscillationinto a dynamic modus operandi. Virtual Reality Technology thus realises the possibility to link Out-of-body experience to some very concrete and solid objectives, such as the actual physical body and its position in space. The most pathetic dream about flying now becomes a concrete OBE with all the consequential matter of fact, as an event in pure abstraction. This artist practice Ph.D. by project and thesis positions itself as a vehicle right in between art and science with attention to myth, metaphysics and fine art.The installation project includes the research and realisation of a Virtual Reality project, that creates an Out of body experience through a doubling in Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality vision, and a publication that show the importance of OBE in the history of the avant-garde and the development of metaphysics. Research for the Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality application will be in close cooperation with neuroscientist Olaf Blanke and his Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience, Lausanne, where he has been doing ground breaking research in Out of body experience since 2002. Building and rebuilding, painting expanded as installation, the practice part of the Ph.D. intent to create a vital environment, virtual as well as concretely, where OBE appear as a central event, where art and science synthesize into a work of visual art, where the perception of our world finds itself reborn through the process of a radical alienation, that seek to reencounter its own distance through a sensitivity that can induce a new curiosity towards our field of vision, comparable to our acknowledgement of our dream’s marvellous effects on our sense of reality.