[ISEA2010] Paper: Valérie Lamontagne – Materiality, Posthumanist Performativity, and Wearables

Abstract

“Matter, like meaning, is not an individually articulated or static entity. Matter is not little bits of nature, or a blank slate, surface, or site passively awaiting signification; nor is it an uncontested ground for scientific, feminist, or Marxist theories. Matter is not a support, location, referent, or source of sustainability for discourse. Matter is not immutable or passive. It does not require the mark of external force like culture or history to complete it. Matter is always already an ongoing historicity”. _Barad, 2003

This paper outlines how wearables reconfigure notions of performativity because of their admixtures of human / nonhuman agencies. It argues that contemporary wearables, in a continuum with technological / body performative entanglement dating from early 20th century art (Avant-Garde), materially alter practices of performativity because they propose new and intimately co-dependent agencies of the human/nonhuman. The theoretical arguments to substantiate this human/nonhuman reconfiguration of performativity via wearables are culled from recent Science Technology and Society (STS) and posthumanist approaches to materiality and performativity.

  • Valérie Lamontagne Valérie Lamontagne is a digital media artist, designer, and curator. She founded 3lectromode, a design group developing wearables combining D-I-Y technology with current fashion research. Her Ph.D. investigates “Performativity, Materiality and Laboratory Practices in Artistic Wearables”.

Full text (PDF) p.  30-32