Culture / Art Republik

Chris Burden: Extreme Measures

Chris Burden pushes the limits of of his expression to reach unworldly transcendence.

Jan 06, 2014 | By Staff Writer

Chris Burden is one of the most renowned artists of performance art. In his inspiring body pieces from the early 1970s, he orchestrated a series of daredevil brutalities and tests of the body’s resilience. On large-scale installations, Burden’s work seeks to intertwine feats of engineering and technology with the limits of the human body. 

The idea of man’s ability to re-create technology has seen Burden push his series of projects “beyond the durational experience of the body.” He attempts to reach a kind of transcendence through actions (instructing his friend to shoot him in the arm at close range, nailing himself to a Volkswagen Beetle, crawling through broken glass on national television, setting fire to two glass shelves soaked in gasoline attached to his shoulders) that he describes as reaching a far-off point and approaching the boundaries of extremes.

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