Some ask the question, is giving birth in public a form of art? I ask what kind of person would want to give birth in front of a bunch of gawking strangers and what kind of people would watch a public live birth?
New York – A Brooklyn artist invites spectators to observe her baby's arrival. But does giving birth in a gallery make it art?
A pregnant New York City performance artist has arranged to have her baby in an art gallery, while an audience watches. The artist, Marni Kotak, plans to spend every day over the next six weeks at the Microscope Gallery in Brooklyn — which has been transformed into a "birthing room," complete with inflatable birthing tub — until the baby comes. Kotak, who will be attended by a midwife and doula, says the performance, "The Birth of Baby X," will show that "giving birth, the greatest expression of life, is the highest form of art." Is childbirth really art? (continue reading at Yahoo News, The Week)
The idea of this sickens me -- not from the physical aspect (child birth is messy business), but the idea that a mother refers to her unborn baby as Baby X and that she cares more about herself than she does the safety of her unborn child. But, as the article says, performance art is all about pushing boundaries. We've heard of other performance art and I'm inclined to think performance art has no boundaries.
By definition, performance art can happen any where, any time, and involves the body of the performer and interaction with the audience. So, anything, even public childbirth, can be called performance art -- but that doesn't make it right.
This is child abuse, not art: Kotak should be ashamed of the way she's putting her artistic vision ahead of the health and safety of her baby, says L.S. Carbonell at Lez Get Real. Baby X deserves to be born into a warm, safe place, not a public environment full of germs, and the midwife and doula "should have their licenses revoked" for enabling this "self-centered" jerk. "This is as much a case of child abuse as beating a kid with a stick."
"Childbirth as performance art"