L/7: SAMIRAH

09 Mar 06 21:00 > 14 Mar 06 24:00 Installation (mala soba)
Red Dawn 7

Samirah was born in a place and time devastated by nuclear war. The war destroyed the ruling class and its infrastructure and the consequences for survivors as well as their descendants were horrific: all the new-born children had cancer and mutilated bodies and most of them died shortly after birth. In spite of these extreme conditions, some children survived. They lived as beggars.
One of the children, a brave girl called Samirah, was noticed by nanotech scientists on their visit to the devastated land under construction. Fascinated by Samirah's will to survive, the scientists thought she might be interesting study material and they promised her food, shelter and health-care in exchange for her body. Young and naive Samirah became a victim of science, nothing more than a guinea pig for a never-ending series of nanotech experiments.
Post-operational treatment of her implants and nutritious food enabled her to reach her puberty quite sanely. At the same time, the cosmetics industry decided to no longer invest in development of implants that prevent bodies from aging and growing fat because the use of nanotechnology for aesthetic purposes suddenly became widely disapproved by the media. When public opinion became clearly hostile, the scientists decided to stop with the experiments. They gave Samirah back to her mother the gutter. Alone, she tried to survive among other survivors of nuclear war. Her improved and highly sensual body was noticeable and soon she was captured by human traders. Samirah was destined gain, this time for the porn industry.

L/7 is a Belgian activist/artist who studied ceramics and glass design in Hasselt. She exhibited her works in different circumstances from institutional gallery spaces to anarchist squats. Like utopian story-telling, her cyborg figure Samirah appears in an ambiguous fairytale/nightmare. Her story is a story about abuse and mutilation of body through radiation, medical experiments, sex slavery and the beauty industry; a story about this world.