Dr Helen Pynor is an Artist and Researcher whose practice explores the materiality of human and non-human bodies, and philosophically and experientially ambiguous zones, such as the life-death boundary and the animate-inanimate boundary in relation to prosthetics. Pynor works with living and ‘semi-living’ cells, organs and biomolecules such as DNA, and in a recent work her own surgically excised bone material. She works across installation, media art, photography, video, sculpture, microscopy and performance.
Pynor frequently undertakes in-depth residencies in scientific and clinical institutions such as The Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics, Dresden, and her work has been exhibited widely nationally and internationally including the Experimenta ‘Life Forms’ International Triennial of Media Art, Beijing Media Art Biennale, FACT (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology) UK, National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts, and ISEA. Pynor has received an Honorary Mention at Prix Ars Electronica in Linz, Austria.
Pynor will explore bone and bone china, within a broader exploration of ‘interspecies companionships’ between animal bodies and mineral species, and the animal-calcium kinship that has led to the evolution of bones. Using bone material to make bone china objects brings into dialogue two seemingly incongruent ideas: the ‘animality’ of bone china, and the ‘minerality’ of animals. This offers a metaphoric and deconstructive gesture that reveals underlying structures of material connectivity between living and non-living entities, that are not immediately available to our senary perception. Pynor’s project will also explore native fauna, and forms of listening and paying homage.