Publication > HALF LIFE


Machines and Organisms, Artistic Positions in Times of Climate Change and Extinction

Machine-organisms, organic machines: The dissolution of the boundaries between bodies and mechanics is on its way to normality – sentient prostheses, neuroimplants, neuroenhancement – posthumanism. The extinction of species is to be compensated by synthetic and mechanical organisms. How are these developments thought through artistically? What threats and promises are emerging? 41 artistic positions from 15 countries provide critical to visionary templates for the fields.

Socio-emotional service machines:
Replacement: machine environments and artificial organisms.
Utopia: prostheses, utopian instruments and substitute bodies
Interconnection: mediating machines and interspecies communication
Autonomous and obsolete machines: past machine cultures.

This volume provides groundbreaking positions from apparative art, bioart (art that incorporates living organisms or cultures), and other approaches. It confronts the diverse knowledge generated by participating artists* on the subject of the intersections of mechanics and bodies (social, human, animal, fluid). The result sheds light on the wounds and promises of a threatened present.

With essays and articles by:

Käthe Wenzel / Manfred Blohm:

Regine Rapp & Christian de Lutz:
Trans-, Post- und darüber hinaus. Einige Reflexionen über Maschinen und das Biologische
Trans-, Post- and Beyond. Some Reflections on Machines and the Biological

Lisa Glauer / Helge Oder
Pleasing Machines als erneuerte Produkte künstlerischer Designforschung
Pleasing Machines as Re-Newed Products of Artistic Design Research

With artistic contributions by

Agnes Meyer-Brandis – Alex May – Alexander Schellbach – Andras Böröcz – Anna Dumitriu – Christa Sommerer – Claudia Schmitz – Courtney Johnson – Emma Critchley – Giuliana Cuneaz – Guy Ben-Ary – Hannes Waldschütz – Ionat Zurr – Jeongmoon Choi – Ji Hyun Park – Jinyoung Lee – John Roach – Kaethe Wenzel – Kerstin Ergenzinger – Laurent Mignonneau – Lisa Glauer – Lorenzo Oggiano – Lukas Truniger – Malte Bartsch – Marie-Eve Levasseur – Michael Schulze – Nicola L. Hein – Oron Catts – Pey-Ying Lin – PSJM – Robbin A. Silverberg – Robertina Šebjanič – Saša Spačal – Špela Petrič – Susanna Hertrich – Susanna Schoenberg – Suzanne Anker – Tobias Grewenig – VALIE EXPORT – Verena Friedrich – Via Lewandowsky – 431art


HALF LIFE. Maschinen und Organismen, künstlerische Positionen für eine Gegenwart von Klimawandel und Artensterben / Machines and Organisms, Artistic Positions in Times of Climate Change and Extinction, ed. by Käthe Wenzel / Manfred Blohm, Hannover 2018


Käthe Wenzel / Manfred Blohm


Fabrico, Hannover


English, German


204 pages

Book design

Werner Fütterer


Käthe Wenzel

Soft cover

Information here

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