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Themesicon: navigation pathCyborg Bodiesicon: navigation pathMythical Bodies I

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Hybrids of art and science

It is also characteristic that the equation since the Renaissance of the ‹divino artista› with the ‹deus artifex› on the one hand, [32] and with the both technically

and artistically well-versed ‹universal genius› on the other hand, is also experiencing a true revival in the age of these new mythologies of creation. However, this is not only being demonstrated by reference to Leonardo da Vinci, who in the theoretical debates over art in the age of new technologies is encountered everywhere as a model for the ‹ingenious› artist-scientistengineer, adorning titles of Herbert W. Franke's polemic on art in the age of the computer [33] and the cover of the German edition of Bruce Sterling's cyberpunk novel «Schismatrix,» [34] and chosen as the name patron for numerous projects, for instance for the «International Society for the Arts, Sciences and Technology (ISAST),» who since 1968 has published the journal «Cyborg Manifesto». And it is by no means only artists such as Eduardo Kac who claim for themselves the role


of scientist. Conversely, a number of scientists also like to behave like artists, or like Craig Venter compare themselves with artists. [35]

In turn, the analogizations of the technologies and their superimposition with the mythical narrations, which lead to new mythologies of art and science (hi)stories, prove to be striking—in particular at the ‹interface gender›: The stories not only glorify the human—or more accurately put—the male effort to track down the ‹secret of life.› The issue above and beyond this is the possibility of ‹improving nature,› which from a perspective handed down by tradition and culture is understood as «birth without a woman.» [36] She is left with—even in current variations of this crucial topic, from the alien clone «Ripley» in «Alien IV» [37] to the cloned sheep «Dolly» [38] —at best with the role of bearer, as the venue for experiments reserved for production artists. In fact, in historical examples and stories the creature is only ostensibly the main character. Rather it is the projection surface for a discourse whose phantasmatic core—and this is revealed by the stories' titles—first and foremostly revolve around the human/male creator, whose ‹true›

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