Last night I popped in to “We are all a cyborg” an event as part of the Wellcome Collection’s Superhuman exhibition. It covered the history of human enhancement from ancient Egyptian prosthetic toes to visions of a transhuman future of hybrid bioengineered-human-machines. The relationship between society, the individual and the aesthetics of the “normal” was explored too. I was also drawn to the themes of embodiedness of cognition by an artwork in which the artist had built extensions to her fingertips to enable her to experience a greater area of space. By altering the physical confines of the body, how far did she change her way of thinking about the world as well?
These ideas fitted in with the idea of maps and spaces that I had been mulling over following the Shape of Knowledge event, and so I started to think about the crossover between human and machine, the leaking of cyberspace across into “real” space, and how we map – and with what we map – these shifting worlds and worldviews.