Home > Catalogue > Venezia Arti > 29 | 2020 > Aesthetics of Infection: From Cyborg to Theriomorph

Aesthetics of Infection: From Cyborg to Theriomorph

Roberto Marchesini    direttore di Animal Studies    

Karin Andersen    Artista    



As long as cultural history has been passed on, art and science have always been connected. However in the past decades, while it has become more and more evident that traditional anthropocentric and humanistic values have led to a huge and unprecedented environmental crisis, the dialogue between scientific research and artistic production has been increasingly focusing on a new vision of humanity as an open, undetermined and transitory entity. This essay examines how recent technoscientific advancements and relating artistic imagery have boosted the evolution of a posthumanistic idea of identity, moving away from the concept of human cultural self-sufficiency and gaining consciousness of our dependance on interaction and blending with alterity. A series of selected examples evidence the wide range of mutation spreading in contemporary audiovisual culture, oscillating between the two archetypical concepts of the Cyborg and the Theriomorph. The viral diffusion of hybrid contents, as the emerging idea of organisms and technology invading each other, suggests that we are approaching a paradigm of infection, not in the sense of a dangerous invasion of human health, integrity and purity, but in terms of a deeply necessary hybridisation with otherness.

Dec. 11, 2020
Aug. 31, 2020
July 3, 2020

Keywords: CyborgViralTheriomorphismTechnologyMutationScienceHybridisationPosthumanismContemporary ArtAlterityArtInfectionAnthropocene

Copyright: © 2020 Roberto Marchesini, Karin Andersen. This is an open-access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction is permitted, provided that the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. The license allows for commercial use. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.