Author Archive

Queer Erotica

July 3rd, 2011 by admin | No Comments | Filed in Uncategorized

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Drawings by William Blake by Jack Butler

July 3rd, 2011 by admin | No Comments | Filed in Uncategorized

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Red Drawings for “Art and Cold Cash”

July 3rd, 2011 by admin | No Comments | Filed in Uncategorized

(StoryBones Games: Traditionally, Inuit arrange the head bones of a large lake trout into patterns telling stories of heroes while voicing current domestic conflict. The closer the telling cuts to the “bone of contention”, the greater the audience’s respect).

Here, I play the StoryBones game myself, drawing on the shapes of the bones. The contents of my Qamanituaq Diary derive from my arctic visual diaries, 1969 to the present engagement. A new drama is created with each new installation-configuration. Playing the game extends to the touch sensitive audio-drawing installation My earliest memory of money is selling flower seeds door to door.

Boys In Love

July 3rd, 2011 by admin | No Comments | Filed in Uncategorized

Mixed fabric quilt in silk, cotton and rayon, based on original pencil drawings by Jack Butler.

Digital images transferred to fabric.

Interpretation of drawings in thread painting by Vicki Cal.

Piecing and quilting by Bernice Green.

June 2009, Toronto

Picturing Fatemaps

December 6th, 2010 by admin | No Comments | Filed in Uncategorized

I use the means and methods of visual art to produce medical research. The resulting hybrid research images are alive in the cultures of both art and science.

My foundational practice is drawing. However, drawing-as-process has taken me into diverse technologies for the realization of my ideas, and has extended into sculptural modeling, computer animation, video installation, and performance art. Drawing, as a technology-of-the-hand, for me, has become a somatechnics (bodily being as always already technologised, and a technology always already enfleshed).

Picturing Fatemaps is comprised of three distinct elements:

First, my computer animation, Genital Embryogenesis plays continuously on a video monitor.

Second, a contextualizing discourse, Picturing Genital Embryogenesis addresses the biological and social-critical investigation of sexual differentiation in the human embryo.

The animation, Genital Embryogenesis, and the full paper, Picturing Genital Embryogenesis, are available on this web site.

Third, Fatemap: would you like to know what will happen?, is a theatrical, video projection construction, comprised of multiple layers of paintings on clear vinyl (paintings that represent  embryological development of the face and the genitals), through which palimpsest one views the projected video Nipples, a compilation of live performances where I draw explanations of genital development on the skin – on my body and on the bodies of friends.

My choice of locally found step ladders as supports for Fatemap: would you like to know what will happen, and my use of set-it-up, take-it-down portable materials also emphasize the theatrical, performative, contingent nature of the work – my work is play. And the role of fate, represented by the biological concept of the fatemap, is also a metonym for the theatrical, performative, contingent and unstable development of genital sex, gender and sexual identity.

By bringing the sensuous tools of picturing into the research laboratory to contribute to the rigor of the scientific research team, while, in the studio and gallery, positioning this research onto the body and into the zones of touch, sex and the erotic, my purpose is to offer more accurate social and aesthetic discriminations and adequate frames when conceptualizing and representing the process of sexual differentiation in the embryo.

Click on the image thumbnails at right to listen to an audio description of each

DOWNLOAD: Picturing Genital Embryogenesis (.doc – 53kb)

Genesis of Breath

September 8th, 2007 by admin | No Comments | Filed in Uncategorized

Genital Embryogenesis

December 7th, 2005 by admin | No Comments | Filed in Uncategorized

The animation, ‘Genital Embryogenesis” 2005, is based on my participation as a member of a research team – urological surgeon, pediatric endocrinologist, radiologist, geneticist and artist – at Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg, Canada, 1976-1980.

My charge was to make models representing both the normal and anomalous development of the genitals in the human embryo. My primary research methods included direct observation of embryos, analysis of ultrasound imaging, photography of collections of specimens, and a review of extant illustrated literature.

Modeling in plasticine clay, “Genital Embryogenesis” begins without textual explanation making five stages of normal development visible. The initial (indifferent) pre-genital structure differentiates, first into female then male polar extremes of the possible spectrum of genital anatomies. The animation then re-plays these images supported by my personal, partly scientific-technical, partly poetic, textual explanation of genital embryogenesis.

I believe that, because the way we see our individual genitals is culturally loaded with signification, it is neither possible nor desirable to represent genital development without acknowledged bias. Sexual difference is a critical social marker imbued with the politics of power. My personal choices in constructing these models, their graphic representation and texts, express my theoretical and existential understanding of the biological process. I have, for example, rejected the traditional position of the subject, lying on her/his back, presenting the genitals for public examination. In “Genital Embryogenesis”, I position the genital “upside down” in relation to the frame, similar to its more natural position in the womb. This reorientation re-contextualizes the embryo and, therefore, the genitals, in relation to the mother. For me, this position sheds the unacknowledged practice of objectification and disempowerment implicit in virtually all representations of the genitals, whether in the scientific literature or in popular pornography.

I believe, also, that the text and images of “Genital Embryogenesis” suggest the possibility that these stages of genital embryogenesis may make visible – expose the look of – the potential range of adult genitals between the imaginary ideals of female and male.


May 8th, 2004 by admin | No Comments | Filed in Uncategorized

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Embryogenesis of Breath

October 23rd, 1996 by admin | 36 Comments | Filed in Uncategorized

How do emotion and desire effect the representation of truth in science and truth in art?

How does beauty relate to information in visual models of the growth and shape-changing of the human embryo?