The Immortal: Life Support Machines In Perpetual Loop

Are life support machines on loop all we are? The Immortal is a divine, Rube Goldberg-esque contraption concocted by artist Revital Cohen:

A Heart-Lung Machine, Dialysis Machine, an Infant Incubator, a Mechanical Ventilator and an Intraoperative Cell Salvage Machine…are connected to each other, circulating liquids and air in attempt to mimic a biological structure.

The Immortal investigates human dependence on electronics, the desire to make machines replicate organisms and our perception of anatomy as reflected by biomedical engineering. The organ replacement machines operate in orchestrated loops, keeping each other alive through circulation of electrical impulses, oxygen and artificial blood.

The interpretation of anatomy with a mechanical vocabulary reflects strongly on the Western perception of the body. Defining the body as a machine – where dysfunctional parts can be replaced by mechanics – speaks of how we understand life.


3 Comments on "The Immortal: Life Support Machines In Perpetual Loop"

  1. To take the abstraction even further, we’re each a pattern of information that manages to sustain itself in the froth and fray of storming matter and energy.

    At least for a little while…

    • Calypso_1 | Sep 13, 2012 at 10:09 pm |

      It would be pretty cool to take diagnostic outputs from all the machines to an oscilloscope than an EEG-type read out.  You could also have a debugger running on some of the embedded device code displaying a constant stream of hex output.

  2. a few years ago eye saw something similar in Bangkok

    artist sick

    but in that case the artist was trying to heal dead artists
    with a combination of technology & Chinese acupressure

    presently, humans have the option as to how cyborg the want to be
    if things continue unabated
    being hooked into the Borg Collective wont be an option

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