Corporeal Mélange: Aesthetics and Ethics of Biomaterials in Stelarc and Nina Sellars’s “Blender”*

Contemporary artists who use biomaterials to make art objects provide a valuable occasion for raising provocative questions about the value and use of human and nonhuman tissue in the biotechnological age. By disseminating ideas from the insular space of the laboratory to the general public, artists are able to broach philosophical, political, social and ethical questions that surround human ontology. The author considers the aesthetic aspects of Stelarc and Nina Sellars’s “Blender” installation alongside the work of artists who assert an ethical position in their use of biomaterials.