Monday, March 22, 2010

The body as art -- how far is too far?

I'm reeling from news of a high school friend's death. We lost touch after graduation so I didn't know until today that she died in 2007. Just as I am shocked by her passing, I am also trying to process her life -- she became a famous artist, working to meld her identity with her husband's by creating one person, plastic surgery enhanced twins. It's very complex.

This is worth reading, and worth thinking about, not just to remember Jackie (or Lady Jaye as she was apparently known), but to muse about the ever-more plastic nature of our lives. Is surgery for art's sake somehow more significant than surgery for vanity? Is adding breast implants to examine gender, sex, and identity of more worth than having them just to be more buxom? As usual, I don't have an answer to any of these question, but this time I'm overcome not only by the philosophical implications, but by the personal sense of loss -- of saying goodbye to a friend whome I hadn't even said hello to in twenty years.

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