Amanda Newall and Ola Johansson

The Interdisciplinary, Diachronic and Prefigurative Translations of Blodlopp

The video work Blodlopp cut across three disciplinary demarcations and thus required spectatorial translations of

(i) applied performance | moving image

(ii) immunology | costume work

(iii) artistic research | activism

The artwork emerged as artistic research (immunological studies, workshops with actors and non-actors, experimental laboratory work with the artists’ own blood) in a double residency at the bio-artistic institute SymbioticA and Fremantle Arts Centre. The project drew on the hypothesis that the immune system can be viewed and applied as a blueprint for culture-historical changes through encounters with alien cultural agents.

The upshot became an artwork in its own right, but given the politicized conditions in metropolitan Perth at the time it also served as a paratactical instantiation to the indigenous crisis in the city. Unlike traditional modes of oppositional art, Blodlopp was more in line with contemporary forms of ‘prefigurative’ actions which are not necessarily contingent on something it protests or refuses to become, but rather establishes a radical and affirmative alternative to it.

Given the chiastic structure of the artwork, its exhibitory framework and its timely context, it is through the critical minds of audiences that the translations must emerge between the artistic, scientific and political strands.