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