Malignant Mother

Yiorgos Zafiriou

Exhibition Dates
16 August - 18 August 2007

In 2004 surgical nipple grafts made the artist's nipples redundant pieces of flesh. They simply became decorations marked upon his chest by surgery.

Overview

In 2004 surgical nipple grafts made the artist's nipples redundant pieces of flesh. They simply became decorations marked upon his chest by surgery. Malignant Mother celebrated the transition of Zafiriou's nipples from sites of pleasure to coloured skin patches that stare out from his torso.



Like the surgery, the performance was prepared as a ritualised process. A bell rings. A tattooist prepares her machinery. A figure in a lab coat suture a chain made from human fingernails to his navel.


In the course of the performance the artist's nipples were made black. Black is used to represent a symbolic death. Black makes visible what is invisible.

 

Acknowlegements:
Megan Oliver (Tattoist), Fiona McGregor of SenVoodoo (Suturing), Zoo (Non-maternally manipulated lactivational performer), Peter Conlon (Performance Assistant), Daniel Cater (Costumes).

 

Aftermath provided a critical and public focus to the complex relationship of performance and installation art, sharing a genealogy, as they do, in early conceptual and post-object art. Aftermath centred on the ‘aftermath' of performance, or conversely, performance as a strategy for creation of material environments - the bleeding back and forth of active models of performance and its post-life.

 

Over six weeks one of six artists participating from Australia and abroad undertook a performance work in one of the Artspace galleries resulting in the installation Aftermath and collectively creating a dynamic, rolling set of relationships between changing spaces. This program was completed by two discrete performance works by local artists. The project was also accompanied by a set of screenings of international performance documentation in the Artspace Reading Room and a Symposium held at CarriageWorks on Saturday 18 August, 2007.

Yiorgos Zafiriou, 'Malignant Mother', performance documentation, Artspace Sydney, 2007