The Body is Merely the Apparition of a Framework


The Body is Merely the Apparition of a Framework


September 18 – October 7, 2017


John Stevens (curator / artist)


This exhibition speaks to the ephemeral nature of the corporeal body, the nullity of selfhood under the paradigm of the image, the vacuity of an identity under duress, and its nodal, atomized, and specular character. A series of photographic self-portraits by John Stevens (MAVCS 2018) are paired with works from the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection by Adam Broomberg, Agnes Denes, Anneli Henriksson, Arno Mokros, Barbara Kasten, Beate Geissler and Oliver Sann, Christian Tunge, Critical Art Ensemble, Daniel Mellis, Emma Hammar, IC-98 (Taru Elfving and Patrik Söderlunf), Jarad Solomon, Javier Toro Blum, Jos Jansen, Lynne Heller, Mungo Thomson, and Stefan Burger.

“Like cybernetic reimagining’s of early motion studies by Eadweard Muybridge and Etienne Jules Marey, my self-portraits invoke the graph as a measure of the physical and subjective body. Whereas classic photographers used the graphic spatialization of the body to progress scientific and medical understanding, my portraits reflect on the subject that has come about since then: the individual as a result of the accelerated and technological adaption of the human body to modern life. The graph as a trope of modern life - from maps and spreadsheets to MRI’s and virtual reality - is practically inescapable. By projecting images of graphs onto my body, I am made visible only by the nature of the image itself, and the viewer only perceives me by observing the subtle undulations of lines reflecting over and across my corporeal body.” - John Stevens

Table Of Contents

Case 1

Battlefields, Jos Jansen, 14.81

Software (Agnes Denes spread), ABR TA167 .J47

Libro Negro, Javier Toro Blum, RA 2.804

The Diazotypes, 1973, Barbara Kasten, 14.78

Case 2

Pommel Horse Popo, Stefan Burger, ABR TR647.B875 A4 2013

No Grids No Masters: Drawing About Thinking About Weaving, Anneli Henriksson, Zine 9.46

Suck My Freak Show, Arno Mokros, Zine 11.21

Spirit is a Bone, Adam Broomberg, 90.80

Case 3

David Pregerson Commented, Jarad Solomon, 22.15

Adventures of Nar Duell in Second Life, Lynne Heller, Zine 2.92

Negative Space, Mungo Thomson, 3.36

Metallen, Emma Hammar, 13.84

Case 4

Facing, Christian Tunge, 58.15

Foucault’s Sleep: Models for a Proposal, IC-98 (Taru Elfving and Patrik Söderlunf), 94.87

Volatile Smile, Beate Geissler & Oliver Sann, 9.82

Traces of the Virtual, Critical Art Ensemble, 2.70

A History of Light, Daniel Mellis, 64.1

Satellite Library

Dear Erin Hart, Jessamyn Lovell, 102.53

Vanishing Point: How to Disappear in American Without a Trace, Susanne Bürner, 58.34

ID Sniper, Jakob S. Boeskov, 2.85

DIY or how to kill yourself anywhere in the world for under $399, Joe Scanlan, 105.39

Foukauld: das verschwinden (disparition, disappearance), Markus Oberndorfer, 107.40

Negative Publicity: Artefacts of Extraordinary Rendition, Crofton Black, Z17.9

Keep Your Eye on the Wall: Palestinian Landscapes, 4900.6

The Bungalow, Anouk Kruithof, 100.67

Codex Novum Sensorium, Steven Pestana, 66.14

September, 2009 - October, 2015, Kiona Cai, Z16.11

Creating Ourselves: The Self in Art, Works from the ISelf Collection, ABR NX650.I35 C74 2017

Autoportrait, Martin Parr, 102.32

Dita Pepe Self-Portraits 1999 - 2014, Dita Pepe, 108.40

Small Things in Silence (Chiisaki mono, chinmoku no naka de), Masao Yamamoto, 5.42

Amaranth/Arachne, Joan Wolbier, 55.1

Art and Subjecthood: the Return of the Human Figure in Semiocapitalism, ABR/REF NX650.H74 A78 2011

Drawing a Hypothesis: Figures of Thought, Nikolaus Gansterer, RA 2.780

Theory, Theoria, and the Theoric Gaze, Janelle Rebel, 9.71

Lynn Valley 8, Derek Sullivan, 69.24

Google, Volume 1, King Zog, Z1.25

Graphic Arts Future: Corporeal Knowledge, Sonnenzimmer, 12.52




John Stevens (curator / artist), “The Body is Merely the Apparition of a Framework,” SAIC Flaxman Library & Special Collection Exhibitions, accessed July 15, 2020,