To think that the human body is entirely as it should be is, in Schmidt’s view, a bit arrogant. Isn’t it a pity after all that your ears can never touch each other because the head is always in between? Or why don’t we have antennae, so that our senses could be more distinct.
For Schmidt, the way we position ourselves in the world says a lot about how we relate to it. Humans place themselves above other things and animals. We categorize in notions of right and wrong, sick and healthy, normal and abnormal. Schmidt wants to move away from that. She wants to overcome bodily separations.
Schmidt’s installations, prosthetics and performances create a circumstance in which she demands an extension of the body, for example a tube that allows you to breath from nose to foot in order to expand the concept and the function of the lungs. These works are also vehicles that can propel the body into new transformations.
Her paintings and chalk drawings similarly display body parts and variations on their function. The accompanying texts make them reminiscent of schoolbook illustrations. Fascination becomes patently clear here.
Roos van Rijswijk