As we are constantly reminded by popular media, developments in biological technologies stand to revolutionise our experience of being human. This continual bombardment of ideologies of technological supremacy place us continually on the brink of the ‘future’. These ideas preoccupy my ongoing art practice, exploring the transformative potential of biological matter in humans and the wider environment.
Alien Nature explores ideas of a biological sublime within the context of the technologisation of nature. Through an alchemical approach to materiality and process, these works navigate a landscape of biological metamorphosis.
Since around 2007 the Junior Oxford Dictionary has been removing biological words in favour of technological terms. Although language inevitably changes over time, this trend points to a disconnection with nature as we know it; what once seemed familiar is made strange. Language forms the basis of our understanding and ability to engage with life, and maintains hierarchies of social and cultural importance. Without language to contextualise our world we confront a purely experiential relationship with nature, with the potential to recover a sense of the sublime in nature and the body; a raw, intuitive space.
This project is supported by the City of Yarra through the Small Projects Grant program.
Alicia King is a Melbourne-based artist with an ongoing interest in technology and the natural world, particularly in the broad field of art and science. Her practice has examined tools of biological technologies, as a way to explore contemporary perspectives of the human body as a conceptually loaded, transformative, raw material.
She holds a PhD for Transformations of the Flesh; Rupturing Embodiment through Biotechnology, an artistic exploration of relationships between biotech practices and the physical, ethical and ritual body.
The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA, NYC published Alicia’s work The Vision Splendid in their recent publication Bio Design: Nature + Science + Creativity, by William Myers.
Alicia is recipient of numerous grants, awards and residencies throughout Australia, Europe and Asia, including the Australia Council Tokyo Studio Residency, and Asialink Tokyo Wonder Site Residency; the Rosamond McCulloch Studio at the Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris; Residency in the Galapagos Archipelago, South America; and Foundation BAD, Netherlands and Organhaus, China.
She has been involved in a range of collaborative projects internationally, including with OLTA (Tokyo), Andreas Greiner (Germany), and locally with The Holy Trinity (with Mish Meijers and Tricky Walsh), and 6A ARI projects.