UNBORN0x9

Shu Lea Cheang (US), Ewen Chardronnet (FR), FUTURE BABY PRODUCTION (FR)

UNBORN0X9 is an art installation and a hacking performance that explores the role of obstetric science in the increasingly technological experience of human reproduction, speculating on new types of bonding that may emerge with artificial wombs. Between years 2017-2020, software coding sessions, sonic workshops, reading groups, interviews, and improvised performances were held following the studies in pregnancy typologies,  the development of fetuses in artificial wombs outside of the body (ectogenesis), the surrogacy childbearing, and the cyborg future of parenting. Reconsider the topics of the “Cyborg Baby” advanced in the 1980s by philosopher Donna Haraway in the wake of her Cyborg Manifesto, artists contributing to this project formalized their collective work under the name “Future Baby Production”.

 

In collaboration with the echOpen.org living lab who engages in the development of open source and low cost echo-stethoscope with smartphone application, UNBORN0X9 forks the prototype of its professional tool and hacks the inaudible ultrasonic waves in a sonic conversion. Ultrasound is a technology that originated in sonar detectors for submarine warfare and introduced in obstetric practice in the early 1960s. In its way of intervening the intimacy inside the women’s body, ultrasound has embedded a biopolitical dimension. As the visualization and sonification of ultrasound data prompts augmented interaction, the UNBORN0X9 performance allows the glitches of ultrasonic data to be further expanded and re-interpreted by an assemble of sound artists.  Opening up multi-interface communication with the unborn—from still born of 0 month to 9 month complete cycle, pregnancy is integrated into a high-tech vision of the body as a biological component of a cybernetic communication system. In treating a fetus as if it were outside a woman’s body, to make it visible, is a political act.

UNBORN0X9 is an art installation and a hacking performance that explores the role of obstetric science in the increasingly technological experience of human reproduction, speculating on new types of bonding that may emerge with artificial wombs. Between years 2017-2020, software coding sessions, sonic workshops, reading groups, interviews, and improvised performances were held following the studies in pregnancy typologies,  the development of fetuses in artificial wombs outside of the body (ectogenesis), the surrogacy childbearing, and the cyborg future of parenting. Reconsider the topics of the “Cyborg Baby” advanced in the 1980s by philosopher Donna Haraway in the wake of her Cyborg Manifesto, artists contributing to this project formalized their collective work under the name “Future Baby Production”.

 

In collaboration with the echOpen.org living lab who engages in the development of open source and low cost echo-stethoscope with smartphone application, UNBORN0X9 forks the prototype of its professional tool and hacks the inaudible ultrasonic waves in a sonic conversion. Ultrasound is a technology that originated in sonar detectors for submarine warfare and introduced in obstetric practice in the early 1960s. In its way of intervening the intimacy inside the women’s body, ultrasound has embedded a biopolitical dimension. As the visualization and sonification of ultrasound data prompts augmented interaction, the UNBORN0X9 performance allows the glitches of ultrasonic data to be further expanded and re-interpreted by an assemble of sound artists.  Opening up multi-interface communication with the unborn—from still born of 0 month to 9 month complete cycle, pregnancy is integrated into a high-tech vision of the body as a biological component of a cybernetic communication system. In treating a fetus as if it were outside a woman’s body, to make it visible, is a political act.

unborn0x9.labomedia.org

UNBORN0X9 is a project of Future Baby Production. An initiative by Shu Lea Cheang and Ewen Chardronnet

 

A Makery/Antre-Peaux/UrsuLaB/ production in association with Labomedia, echOpen

An Art2M/MAKERY presentation with Art4Med (2021-2022), an EU platform on Art and medical science research, http://art4med.eu

 

Technical team: Benjamin Cadon, Labomedia; Jérôme Dubois, echOpen; Vivien Roussel, thr34d5 Mechanical engineering: Thomas Demmer

Baby fabrication: Svar Simpson

Pregnancy topology workshop: Catherine Lenoble, Alexandra Haché

Graphic design: Olivier Morvan

 

With support from Dispositif pour la Création Artistique Multimédia et Numérique (DICRéAM), CNC (France), (2017-2020); Art4Med is co-funded by the Creative Europe programme of the European Union (2021-2022)

Shu Lea Cheang (US) is an artist and filmmaker whose work aims to re-envision genders, genres, and operating structures. From homesteading cyberspace in the 90s to her current retreat to post-netcrash BioNet zone, Cheang takes on viral love, bio hack in her current cycle of works. She represented Taiwan with 3x3x6, a mixed media installation at Venice Biennale 2019 and is currently developing UKI, a sci-fi viral alt-reality cinema. Ewen Chardronnet (FR) is an artist, writer, journalist, curator, producer, and organizer of numerous intermedia productions, exhibitions, and international events. He has engaged in several ongoing artistic projects including the Laboratory Planet collective, the Aliens in Green, the Roscosmoe initiative, and the Green Open Food Evolution research project. He is currently chief editor of makery.info and lead coordinator of the EU Creative Europe program ART4MED.eu (2020-2022). The collective Future Baby Production represents the common group effort to raise issues such as the possible impact of low cost echostethoscopy on global health issues, questions of access to healthcare and motherhood, ectogenesis, and the technicization of reproduction, and the exchange between science-fiction imaginary and science in the making at large.

Shu Lea Cheang (US) is an artist and filmmaker whose work aims to re-envision genders, genres, and operating structures. From homesteading cyberspace in the 90s to her current retreat to post-netcrash BioNet zone, Cheang takes on viral love, bio hack in her current cycle of works. She represented Taiwan with 3x3x6, a mixed media installation at Venice Biennale 2019 and is currently developing UKI, a sci-fi viral alt-reality cinema. Ewen Chardronnet (FR) is an artist, writer, journalist, curator, producer, and organizer of numerous intermedia productions, exhibitions, and international events. He has engaged in several ongoing artistic projects including the Laboratory Planet collective, the Aliens in Green, the Roscosmoe initiative, and the Green Open Food Evolution research project. He is currently chief editor of makery.info and lead coordinator of the EU Creative Europe program ART4MED.eu (2020-2022). The collective Future Baby Production represents the common group effort to raise issues such as the possible impact of low cost echostethoscopy on global health issues, questions of access to healthcare and motherhood, ectogenesis, and the technicization of reproduction, and the exchange between science-fiction imaginary and science in the making at large.